Archive for Thursday, December 28, 2006

Mail Call: Rotary Club asset to county

December 28, 2006

The joy of Rotary has been with me since I was seven. As a member in my 4-H club, the Rotary Club honored with a banquet, the kids who had taken a 4-H project to the fair.

As kids we found it hard to imagine we were going to dinner without our parents. We were all so excited. With our hair curled tightly, wearing our church clothes, and with final reminders to put our napkins on our laps, we entered into a room filled with people who were making an attempt to honor us for our achievements.

I have never forgotten that moment when I felt really appreciated, and supported, by my community.

Nothing has change in all those years except that now as a member of Rotary, I have accepted the challenge of making that experience available for other children in this community.

Rotary is honored to give money to students who attend Boys State and Girls State. We support many high school activities. We encourage Boy Scouts. We actively give money back to the community in many different ways.

Another example of how our De Soto Rotary Club supports our kids is through Rotary Youth Leadership Academy. RYLA is a camp that takes place June 3 to 9 at Washburn University and is an official program of Rotary International. This program allows kids from around the state to experience new leadership opportunities while they are having an on campus experience, which includes actually living in the dorms.

Anyone who is a junior or sophomore should let their principal know of their interest and ask them how to receive an application.

Internationally, we continue to make spirits bright. We have a youth exchange program. We are winning the global battle against polio, and we are continuing efforts to fight hunger and continue our efforts to promote health.

Let's face it. Rotary has a reputation of being an old guys' club. We're changing. We are a club that has so many activities and energy and enthusiasm that we easily promote community programs. Come visit us and see for yourself.

The De Soto Rotary meets at 7 a.m. Fridays in the basement at De Soto United Methodist Church, 8760 Kill Creek Road. It includes one of the best breakfasts in town.

Barbara Gerhard

De Soto Rotary Club ambassador

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