INTERACT CLUBS ASK COMMUNITY SUPPORT TO HELP HAITIAN CHILDREN
St. Joseph, Michigan, August 9, 2019: Area Rotary Sponsored Interact Club Members are asking for community support to help 120 Haitian children get an education. The currently uneducated children, grades K-12, live with families that make $3 a day working in the Sugarcane fields of Batey 106, La Romana, Dominican Republic. The effort will be made possible through a program called Interact4DR and there are various ways that donors can participate.
The vision for the effort, came from Whirlpool Vice President and General Manager, Casey Tubman, who was a July 2019 Chaperone on the Interact Club Trip to the Dominican Republic where 22 of our local high school students and chaperones built a house and provided medical care in batey 106. While this was Casey’s third DR trip, he was especially inspired by his 15-year old daughter, Caroline Tubman, the 2019-2020 Interact Club of St. Joseph High School International Director. While in the DR, Caroline shared with her Dad that she believed more could be done to help the severely impoverished families. More that could improve their lives in a sustainable, long term way. An education was the answer. An education that would not be possible without the help of the Interact Clubs of SW Michigan.
The goal of the Interact Clubs, is to raise $40,000 by the end of the year to make a big impact on the impoverished Haitian village. The first $20,000 is intended to cover education, which costs an average $200 a child. Donations will cover the costs of a teacher, a school uniform, a backpack and school supplies. This is an immediate need, since school starts August 22. An additional $20,000 is being raised to pay for the materials to construct 2 concrete homes that Interact Club Members will help build in the Summer of 2020. There are many ways to donate, including sponsoring one or more children and helping with costs to cover part of or an entire home.
One area business has already stepped forward setting up a matching grant for $20,000. Giving the initiative a leg-up, the major donation has been set up to help our youth help others, while helping develop a service mentality to grow as future leaders of our community and our world. It is hoped that other businesses, organizations, and community members will also step forward to help complete the mission to make a big impact on a struggling village.
• Donation checks should be written to “BCF/Interact4DR” and mailed to Berrien Community Foundation/Interact4DR, 2900 S. State Street, Suite 2E, St. Joseph, MI 49085
• Electronic donations can be submitted through the Berrien Community Foundation website, www.berriencommunity.org/interact4DR, or by clicking on the tab, “Interact4DR”
• All Donors will receive a Charitable Gift Receipt from BCF, a 501c3
Supporting the drive are the Rotary Club of La Romana Rio Dulce, Rotary Club of Lakeshore and Rotary Club of St. Joseph-Benton Harbor. Participating Interact Club Members come from Bridgman High School, Lake Michigan Cathoic High School, Lake Michigan Catholic Middle School, Lakeshore High School, St. Joseph High School and Upton Middle School. Members in High School are invited to go on the annual Dominican Republic Trip. Lead Coordinators assisting Interact Club Members with Interact4DR, are Rotarian Advisor to Interact and the Dominican Republic Trip Jackie Huie, Rotarian Advisor on International Initiatives Charles Jespersen, Rotarian and Dominican Republic Mission Team President and CEO John Powers and Rotarian and Berrien Community Foundation President Lisa Cripps-Downey.
Rotary International is 1.2 million member network of business professionals on a mission to make the world a better place. Rotary Sponsored Interact Clubs, hosted in 159 countries, is a 468,000 member service organization that focuses on community and global needs, builds leadership skills and taps into the vast mentoring network of Rotary. To learn more about Rotary, visit www.rotary.org. To join a local club, visit either www.lakeshorerotary.com or www.sjbhrotary.org. To learn more about the Interact Clubs of Southwest Michigan, visit www.facebook.com/groups/274551255950711. To learn more about the Interact4DR fundraiser, contact Initiative Coordinator, Jackie Huie at firstname.lastname@example.org, 269.930.1325 mobile.