By Ashley Winterstein
The Interact Club at Queen Anne’s County High School has been gaining momentum in recent years under the guidance of Advisors Stephanie Zeiler and Robert Willis. The organization, sponsored by the Centreville Rotary, has its’ roots in service projects and a strong focus on developing good character.
Last school year, students were involved in a myriad of activities, serving both as volunteers at local events and devoted fundraisers for causes they feel are important.
Their fundraising efforts included a silent auction at Doc’s Riverside Grille in Centreville, a “Baskets of Hope” Fundraiser, and an all you can eat Flapjack Fundraiser Breakfast at the Applebee’s in Easton, where they were responsible for setting up, serving food, and then cleaning up the morning service.
Through events such as these, they were able to partner with numerous organizations close to home and abroad. They participated in a special game night at the Centreville Nursing Home, sponsored a food drive where the food was distributed from Our Mother of Sorrows Church, helped a former graduate travel overseas to assist in a well digging operation, and donated funds to Centreville Youth Ministry.
The Interact Club was also able to partner with Sanctuary for Kids to support orphanages in Nepal. The students chose to have their first International Project benefit other children of the world and felt that providing food, shelter, education, medicine, and love to the children who have been rescued from the child trafficking trade in Nepal would leave a lasting impact.
This year, the members have already volunteered at the local Artisan’s Festival and served food at the Wounded Warriors Dinner that was held at the Centreville American Legion.
They are currently finishing up the Operation Christmas Child Campaign, another international project, that sends shoe boxes full of things to children around the world during the holiday season.
As an avid supporter of the Character Counts! Program, Advisor Stephanie Zeiler also allows interns in her art classes to volunteer their time to help with projects. Last year, Dana Seman created dozens of poster-sized color charts that will be used to teach young students how colors can be used to represent their feelings.
Jacki Carter, Queen Anne’s County Positive Youth Development Coordinator, sees the value of clubs such as the Interact Club. She remarked, “The Interact Club and the Rotary are based on character. How we respond to our neighbors’ needs anywhere in this world defines our character values. The art class at Queen Anne’s County High School shows how our students can help character education at their front door. These color charts will help our character coaches’ presentations in promoting understanding of how our feelings are important in impacting our behavior.”
The Queen Anne’s County Character Counts! Advisory Council is excited about the many ways students are actively demonstrating their good character and using their talents to help others.
If you would like more information about the Queen Anne’s County High School Interact Club, please contact Stephanie Zeiler or Robert Willis at 410-758-0500. Please contact Jacki Carter at 410-758-6677 or jcarter @qac.org if have any questions about the Character Counts! Program in Queen Anne’s County.