Every year, the Rotary Interact club students in high schools around the world brainstorm community service projects. Last year, members of Chattahoochee High School Interact club collected non-perishable food items, water bottles and basic hygiene necessities and handed them out to the unsheltered in downtown Atlanta. It was exactly the kind of boots-on-the-ground, direct-action service project that Rotary International at the high school level is known for.
In September, Chattahoochee High School Interact Club President, Rhea Yendamuri started her senior year and, because of the pandemic, knew the club project would have to look a little different this year. What could they do that would benefit a global charity, engage the community and her fellow students, and keep everyone safe? They researched virtual fundraisers, and the VP of the club found Redbubble, an international on-demand art marketplace. It gave them the opportunity to make a global impact, and chose HCC as their targeted charity. They partnered with The Johns Creek High School Interact club to expand their reach and got to work.
The students submit designs for masks, RedBubble inks the designs on masks and ships it directly to the customers. The masks are original artwork by the Interact members from both schools and the proceeds are being donated to HCC. They set a goal of $500 for this school year and plan on continuing to raise money this way through next year, with the hope of being able to move away from masks and onto other options like water bottles, t-shirts and stickers as the pandemic recedes. Rhea has been involved in volunteer clubs at school since she was young, and understands the importance of engagement and giving back. Helping students her age, a world away, get a life changing education, means a lot to her, “If those kids can get an education, it can help them escape the situation they are in. Here, we take education for granted, and when I look at it, there’s so many kids that don’t have opportunity, let alone for free, for 13 years.”
Rhea plans to study neuroscience when she attends university in the fall and hopes to stay involved in the Rotary community! Head to RedBubble to support these committed students, and HCC!