Interact is Rotary International’s service club for young people ages 12 to 18. As one of the most significant and fastest growing programs of Rotary service, Interact has become a worldwide phenomenon. Interact clubs are sponsored by individual Rotary clubs. They are self-governing and self-supporting clubs. Rotarians provide support by attending club meetings, encouraging student governance of the meetings and activities.
Interact clubs are required to complete at least one community service or school project and one international project. Through these efforts, Interactors develop a network of local and international friendships and learn the importance of developing leadership skills. They demonstrate personal integrity and respect for others, understanding the value of individual responsibility and hard work. They experience the rewards of international understanding.
Starting an Interact Club is easy and rewarding. Though the Interact Handbook provides detailed directions, highlights include (1) determining your club's interest and selecting a Rotary advisor(s). (2) The next key step is usually to visit a school's Principal or Assistant Principal in charge of clubs to see if a new Interact Club is possible. (Sometimes Rotarians know students who are interested and both Rotarian and students visit the school together.) Present all the great Rotary goals and benefits for young people. (3) Work with the school to find a school advisor. (Students often help.) (4) Interact Clubs need 15 members to receive a charter, though you might need to begin your club with fewer members. (5) The sponsoring Rotary Club works with the school advisor, using the structure described in the Interact Handbook, to immediately involve members in service projects of their interest. Most of all have fun. (6) The sponsoring Rotary Club will plan a charter ceremony when there are 15 active members.
Remember that there are many resources to help you establish your Interact Club and that your District Interact Chair is also ready to help. Your members will quickly develop leadership skills and learn lots about the great accomplishments of Rotary.