Programs and activities that engage young people up to age 30 in their community and in service projects that foster their interest in Rotary.
Director – Gerry Gawalt
CAMELOT SCHOOL READING PROGRAM
Club members support the reading program at the Camelot School in Fairfax County, VA. Club members read to the hearing impaired and Head Start students weekly during the fall and spring semesters. Many club members participate by reading, singing and acting. In addition, the club has provided funds for their purchase of a Smart Board, a digital camera and other items to assist the Camelot teaching staff. POC – John Pellegrin
INTERACT CLUB AT WSHS
Our Rotary club sponsors the Interact Club at West Springfield High School, working with students on their community and international projects during the year. Interact members are assisting the Rotary Club with projects and fundraisers during the year, Kristi’s Christmas and Special Olympics among them. Community service is a requirement for graduation. Students earn the required 50 hours and more, participating in projects of service to the community and the world, having FUN as they work and learn.
READ & SHERMAN AWARD
In memory of two area Virginia Tech students, Leslie Sherman, and Mary Read, killed in the April 16, 2007 horrific and senseless campus shooting, the Patriot District Memorial Cup was begun. Todd Lalich worked with the Fairfax County School System to lay the groundwork for the Patriot District All Sports/Activities Memorial Cup. The Patriot Cup is a traveling memorial, presented to the Patriot District high school that has the most successful athletic program for the year. POC – Todd Lalich
COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM FOR WSHS
The Rotary Club of West Springfield (RCWS) began a Scholarship Program in 1981 for local high school seniors based on scholastic achievement and involvement in community/school activities. In 2011 the program underwent major changes becoming a 2-year award for West Springfield High School (WSHS) seniors attending Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC), based on financial need, demonstrated academic ability, WSHS Interact Club membership, involvement with civic/community organizations, extra-curricular school activities and scholastic achievement. A unique feature of this scholarship program is the appointment of a Rotary Club Member as a mentor for each scholar. Their responsibility is to follow the scholar’s academic progress, to offer career advice, to ensure critical financial needs are provided for and to be someone the scholar can talk to about their academic/career concerns. A District Grant award in 2013-14 enabled the club to test the expansion of the Scholarship Program to assist current NVCC students struggling with finances needed to complete their degree work. Working with NVCC, an emergency grant was made to a Wounded Warrior that allowed him to complete his last semester of school. Plans are under way to test the other option which is a scholarship with a critical needs criteria administered by NVCC. POC – Travis White
RYLA – ROTARY YOUTH LEADERSHIP AWARDS
To encourage and assist young people in responsible and effective voluntary leadership, every year we publicly recognize many young people who are rendering service to their communities through Rotary Youth Leadership Awards. The program is founded on the ideal that the future of Rotary is reliant on the youth of its community.
Each spring, Club members provide personnel to run the shot-put event at two track & field competitions sponsored by the Potomac Region of Virginia Special Olympics. Both competitions are usually held on Saturdays in April. Each competition provides an opportunity for Rotary members to spend a fantastically fun morning interacting with some of the most inspiring athletes in the local area. The first competition is a pre-qualifier local event and is held at Flint Hill Upper School in Oakton. The second competition is a higher-level regional qualifier event. It is held at Episcopal High School in Alexandria. Based on competitor rankings at the regional qualifier competition, athletes may advance to the statewide Special Olympics competition in Richmond. At each local competition, in addition to running the entire shot-put event, club members assist, encourage, and cheer each athlete in an effort to make all participants feel special and proud of their accomplishments. POC – Clyde Findley
Our Club fully implements Rotary International’s policies to ensure that youth participating in any of our programs are in an environment that is free of abuse and harassment of any kind.