Congratulations to Rangeview High School’s Interact Club for earning the Ron Prascher District Interact/Young Rotary Award! This is the second consecutive year Rangeview won this prestigious award presented by District Rotary.
This honor upholds Rangeview’s Interact Club (RIC)—sponsored by the Rotary Club of Aurora—as the most successful in accomplishing meaningful service projects, developing leadership skills and maintaining strong student participation throughout the school year. The students were presented with a plaque at the annual Rotary District Conference.
RIC is a group of 50 members, led by sponsor Carmen Curtis-Basham, who have touched countless lives within their school, community and even internationally. Each member is empowered to create new ways for RIC to be of service to others. Despite the COVID-19 protocols that were in place for much of the school year, RIC has participated in, organized and hosted a myriad of events to benefit those in need.
They kicked their year of service off with a book drive to establish Little Libraries throughout areas where people may not have access to books. Students painted book collection boxes that homeowners agreed to place in their front yards. Passersby of all ages take books and return or replace them with others. RIC collected so many books, they donated some to neighboring schools and organizations. The Little Libraries continue to promote literacy, a sense of community and encouragement for people to spend less time on their phones.
During the holidays, RIC collected food and even pitched in their own money to create food baskets for their Rangeview Raider families. They also volunteered to ring the Salvation Army bell every Saturday during the holiday season at a local King Soopers where they collected more than $3,500.
They also supported the Comitis Crisis Center by collecting and donating much-needed items for the residents. But when they visited the center, they discovered it needed much more. So in true RIC style, the students created a GoFundMe page, raising $750 plus $130 from the Rotary Club of Aurora’s “Happy Bucks.” The students returned to give the Comitis kitchen a thorough clearing, a nice paint job, cookware and appliances. One student’s uncle plans to repair all of the center’s cabinets and install shelves. Future plans include providing Comitis with new furniture and decorating the walls to give residents a deeper sense of family.
RIC is also passionate about fellow APS students. They began a mentorship program at the neighboring Mrachek Middle School to aid eighth-grade students in their transition to high school. A group of 10 RIC members each mentored upto four Mrachek students while their fellow Interactors mentored youth through a state program.
Other noteworthy projects RIC students are leading include raising money to provide medical supplies and equipment to a hospital in Nigeria, maintaining pen pal relationships with Interact Club students in Canada, cleaning up the Highline Canal, sewing personalized pillowcases for patients at UCHealth and much, much more!
“We have been proud of our Interact Club as we have officers who lead the group, but the
members have bubbled up to the top as leaders also,” said Rotary Interact Coordinator Linda Witulski. “It has been fantastic to see so many students come up with great ideas to help those around them. They understand service above self.”
Congratulations are also in order for RIC President Yebserra Fitsum who earned a full-ride scholarship to Georgetown and RIC Vice President Josh Alvarez who earned a full-ride scholarship to Stanford! We wish all RIC members the best in their future endeavors.