Tag Archives: interact club

Summer camp for RCHS club members

The author, 17-year old Danny Thirakul, cheers for competitors in the Mind Olympics   (photo by Gunnar Hatzenbiler, also age 17)

The author, 17-year old Danny Thirakul, cheers for competitors in the Mind Olympics
(photo by Gunnar Hatzenbiler, also age 17)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — SEPT 3, 2014 —

By Danny Thirakul
River City High School Interact Club

Five River City High School students start the new school year Aug. 20 having attended a different kind of summer camp – one that builds not only camaraderie, but character. The Camp RYLA campers are in the River City High School Interact Club, sponsored by West Sac’s two Rotary clubs: Centennial Rotary and Rotary Club of West Sacramento.

Camp RYLA – Rotary Youth Leadership Awards – proved to be a life changing experience for the five West Sacramento Interactors:  Jessica Ngo, 17, Danny Thirakul, 17, Jayne Chong, 17, Eric Arauza, 17 and JuliaMarie Quenga, 17.

Located at Grizzly Creek Ranch in Portola, Camp RYLA hosts “Interactors” from throughout Rotary District 5180. The high school juniors attend the week-long camp courtesy of full camp scholarships from their sponsoring local Rotary clubs. This year, Sacramento’s Pocket-Greenhaven Rotary Club also awarded a scholarship to River City Interactor Jayne Chong.

RCHS Interact Club President Jessica Ngo says the camp experience “makes you feel like you belong, pushes you to be open, to confront your fears, to be confident in yourself and your abilities, and above all be you!”

At the camp, students are sorted into different teams/groups, where they engage in different icebreakers. They also enjoy many outdoor activities such as archery, kayaking, mountain hiking, and swimming. The ropes course challenges campers both physically and mentally, Jayne says. Campers are encouraged to be open and face their fears with the help and support of their team. She said, “My favorite part was the ropes course because it was amazing how many were able to face their fears.”

Other self-esteem building activities include group games such as the Mind Olympics, Cross the Line, and Superhero. Campers also attend motivational speeches by special guest speakers, the camp directors, and camp counselors.

Throughout the week the teens learn a lot about themselves. Danny says, “They broke themselves down to the tiniest atom and rebuilt themselves bigger and better than ever.” While most of campers start out as strangers, by the end of camp, he says, they feel like family.

To learn more about the Interact Club at River City High School, go to:
http://rivercity.wusd.k12.ca.us/interact

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Hundreds on West Capitol for Earth Day

A young visitor shows off a grin almost as toothy as that of ‘Mooie,’ the city parks department mascot.  Click to enlarge. (News-Ledger photo)

A young visitor shows off a grin almost as toothy as that of ‘Mooie,’ the city parks department mascot.
(News-Ledger photo)

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — APRIL 23, 2014 —

By Lina Vang
& Danny Thirakul
River City High School Volunteers

The sun was shining, the band was playing, and lots of little kids were smiling as teenage volunteers from River City High School’s Interact Club painted faces and more April 19 at city hall (1110 West Capitol Ave., West Sacramento).

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., children and their families enjoyed the city’s annual Earth Day event. This year, the event included the Interact Club’s annual Spring Carnival. Interact Club board member Joelle Panugaling, one of 10 who painted faces, said, “I had lots of fun at the Spring Carnival this year in comparison to last year’s Earth Day. Fellow face painter and board member Beatrice Bui agreed, saying her favorite part was the live music and performances.”

River City High School-Rotary Interact Club board member Beatrice Bui, 16, paints a child’s face Saturday as part of Spring Carnival/Earth Day festivities in West Sacramento. Thirty Interactors volunteered to help out with the event, painting faces and helping with the egg hunt.  Click to enlarge. (Photo courtesy of Rotary/RCHS Interact Club)

River City High School-Rotary Interact Club board member Beatrice Bui, 16, paints a child’s face Saturday as part of Spring Carnival/Earth Day festivities in West Sacramento. Thirty Interactors volunteered to help out with the event, painting faces and helping with the egg hunt. Click to enlarge.
(Photo courtesy of Rotary/RCHS Interact Club)

The Interactor face painters had ‘training’ in face painting prior to the event and the 10 who volunteered to paint faces demonstrated their artistic skills on assorted faces. Interactor and 2013-14 board member Lily He graduates this year from River City and will study architecture this fall at UC Berkeley. Lily said she this year’s Spring Carnival was much bigger than years past and added, “It was a lot of fun for the volunteers and the kids.”

The event also included Earth Day-themed information, bounce houses, and a live outdoor band.

The Interact Club at River City High is co-sponsored by Rotary Club of West Sacramento and West Sacramento’s Centennial Rotary Club. The Interact Club advisers are River City High School English teacher Brandon Duff and Rotary Club of West Sacramento member Charyl Silva.

The crew from River City Dance Academy in front of city hall. Click to enlarge.  (News-Ledger photo)

The crew from River City Dance Academy in front of city hall. Click to enlarge.
(News-Ledger photo)

Hunting for eggs on the city hall lawn . (News-Ledger photo)

Hunting for eggs on the city hall lawn .
(News-Ledger photo)

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Volunteers from RCHS help out at ‘Shamrock Run,’ a trot for charity

 Interact Club members Shabrina Kumar, Karishma Betcha, Phillip Dinh and (RIGHT, front to back) Vanessa Yang, Rebecca Guan, Joelle Panugaling, Gordon Au stationed near the Auto Museum in Sacramento. At the Shamrock Run cancer/youth services benefit Saturday March 15, 30 Rotary-sponsored Interactors were among the volunteers. The Shamrock Run finished at West Sac’s Raley Field. (Photo by Lily He, River City High School Interact Club. Information submitted with assistance of Carol Bogart).

Interact Club members Shabrina Kumar, Karishma Betcha, Phillip Dinh and (RIGHT, front to back) Vanessa Yang, Rebecca Guan, Joelle Panugaling, Gordon Au stationed near the Auto Museum in Sacramento. At the Shamrock Run cancer/youth services benefit Saturday March 15, 30 Rotary-sponsored Interactors were among the volunteers. The Shamrock Run finished at West Sac’s Raley Field. (Photo by Lily He, River City High School Interact Club. Information submitted with assistance of Carol Bogart).

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MARCH 26, 2014 —

By Danny Thirakul
Interact Club, River City High School

Thirty members of the Interact Club at River City High School helped out with the Shamrock Run Saturday, March 15, which ended at West Sac’s Raley Field. The Shamrock Half-Marathon and 5k, sponsored by Blue Diamond Almonds, benefited Project FIT, a non-profit youth fitness initiative. The Triumph Cancer Foundation, a Sacramento-based registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, benefited from the 5K.

The course began right outside Raley Field and traveled as far as Discovery Park to the streets of downtown Sacramento. Participants would see the First Aid Station positioned on 13th and F St. The last station they would see before crossing the finish line was on Front Street near the Auto Museum. They would then finish right where it started, but inside Raley Field. (Information source: http://www.shamrocknhalf.com.)

Danny Thirakul, 16, is a Junior at River City High School. He is writing here of his experience at the Shamrock Run while representing the school’s Interact Club. (courtesy photo)

Danny Thirakul, 16, is a Junior at River City High School. He is writing here of his experience at the Shamrock Run while representing the school’s Interact Club. (courtesy photo)

My duty as a volunteer was to work the Medal and Water Distribution station. As were all volunteers for that station, I was instructed to check in and be there at 7 a.m. After checking in, I headed straight for my station. To my surprise, though, there wasn’t a supervisor there to tell the other volunteers and me what to do.

However, there were staff members, but they only guided us in our ways of managing the station.

Since there was no real leadership, I took the initiative in leading the volunteers and a few Interact members. After I consulted with the staff, I then instructed everyone on what to do, assigning and grouping individuals with a task. When completed, I would give them a new one to do or tell them to help others who were struggling.

The true test of my leadership abilities occurred when waves of athletes finished running. As they came, I feared the runners receiving water and medals would crowd the exit for others. To prevent this from happening, I set up mini-stations along the cool-down path. This would allow the volunteers and me to distribute more and keep the runners moving. I was very proud of my handling of the situation, even when a few volunteers had to leave.

The staff also provided great support. They kept control of the crowd and maintained a steady pace of movement throughout the event. I was glad to see the volunteers and the staff working so well together. I want to thank the staff and other volunteers for collaborating with me. I know without them we wouldn’t have done such a great job. Thank you to Blue Diamond Almonds as well, for putting together this charitable event.

Carol Bogart, an adult volunteer, adds:
A first year Interactor, student writer Danny Thirakul says he originally joined Interact Club at River City High School “for the community service hours.” Then, he says, it was “so fun helping others in need with my Interact Club friends beside me” that he wishes he’d joined his Freshman year. He says, “If I could go back in time and run for a board position, I would do that as well.” Danny describes Interact as “a phenomenal club.” Danny and the other Interactor volunteers exemplify Rotary’s motto: ‘Service Above Self.’ Through the Interact Club, Interactors like Danny become connected to the community and, in Danny’s words, enhance their awareness of the difficulties of the world. River City High School’s Interact Club is co-sponsored by Rotary Club of West Sacramento and the Centennial Rotary Club of West Sacramento. The Interact Club Rotary adviser is Charyl Silva, Rotary Club of West Sacramento. The Interact Club adviser at RCHS is Brandon Duff, who teaches English.

 

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Big kids helping little kids

Volunteers Lily He and Jessica Ngo showed up for the ‘Reading Buddy’ program held at the library, 1212 Merkley Avenue.

Volunteers Lily He and Jessica Ngo showed up for the ‘Reading Buddy’ program held at the library, 1212 Merkley Avenue.

FROM THE NEWS-LEDGER — MARCH 6, 2013 —

 The volunteers’ mission was to listen to second-grader Abby Saechin (center) practice her reading skills.

The program runs Fridays 4-5 p.m., courtesy of the River City High School Interact Club and a local Rotary Club chapter.

For information, or to sign up a youngster, call 375-6465.

(Courtesy of Charyl Silva, West Sacramento Rotary Club)

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Copyright News-Ledger 2013