High School-Based Interact Clubs
Interact is Rotary International’s service club for young people ages 14 to 18. Interact clubs are sponsored by individual Rotary clubs, which provide support and guidance, but they are self-governing and self-supporting.
Club membership varies greatly. Clubs can be single gender or mixed, large or small. They can draw from the student body of a single school or from two or more schools in the same community.
Each year, Interact clubs complete at least two community service projects, one of which furthers international understanding and goodwill. Through these efforts, Interactors develop a network of friendships with local and overseas clubs and learn the importance of:
Developing leadership skills and personal integrity;
As one of the most significant and fastest-growing programs of Rotary service, with more than 10,700 clubs in 109 countries and geographical areas, Interact has become a worldwide phenomenon. Almost 200,000 young people are involved in Interact.
Building on the success of Interact clubs in the early 1960s, the IR board created Rotaract in 1968. The new organization was designed to promote responsible citizenship and leadership potential in clubs of young men and women, ages 18 to 30.
Rotaract clubs emphasize the importance of individual responsibility as the basis of personal success and community involvement. Each club is required to complete at least two major service projects each year, one to serve the community and the other to promote international understanding.
Rotary Youth Exchange
Rotary Youth Exchange (RYE) selects high school students (ages 15-18) who complete an academic year of study and language immersion in a foreign country. Students live with host families and are involved with local Rotary clubs. District 5490 sponsors approximately 40 students each year (20 inbound and 20 outbound) representing over 15 countries.
The official name of this activity is the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA). The RYLA project began in Australia in 1959, when young people throughout the state of Queensland were selected to meet with Princess Alexandra, the young cousin of Queen Elizabeth II. The Rotarians of Brisbane, who hosted the participants, were impressed with the quality of the young people and decided to bring youth leaders together each year for a week of social, cultural and educational activities.
In an informal atmosphere, groups of outstanding young people ages 14 to 30 spend several days in a challenging program of leadership training, discussions, inspirational addresses and social activities designed to enhance personal development, leadership skills and good citizenship.
Each year, thousands of young people are selected to attend Rotary-sponsored leadership camps or seminars held in districts throughout the world. Phoenix Rotary 100 joins Rotary clubs from the northwestern third of Arizona and holds RYLA at Camp Pine Rock in Prescott, Arizona, over the three-day Martin Luther King holiday every year. Join us. You’ll be inspired!