A Rotary Club for young people in Harborough has been officially launched.
An Interact Club has been created at Harborough’s Robert Smyth Academy by the Market Harborough Rotary Club.
A special evening to celebrate the new group was held on Tuesday night at The Angel Hotel in Harborough.
The venture means students can now experience the opportunities and benefits from membership of the Rotary organisation.
The club – for those aged between 12 and 18 – will promote international and community projects within the Harborough school and give students the opportunity to develop leadership skills, take part in volunteer projects, make new friends and learn how they can make a difference.
Normal Rotary Club membership is for those aged 18 and above.
Interact’s activities will be under the guidance of experienced Rotarians from the Market Harborough club, but will mostly be led and run by its young people.
The formal chartering evening on Tuesday saw members officially inducted into the club and its certificate and badges of office were presented by the Rotary Club’s district governor Ken Billington.
President of the new club, student Jess Spiby, was welcomed by all those present, including parents, friends and many members of Market Harborough Rotary Club.
Jess, who was the town’s Carnival Queen in 2011-12, said: “This is a wonderful chance for all the Interactors and creates a new opportunity at Robert Smyth for young people to get involved with Rotary.”
One of the club’s first activities will be to support the Literacy Box scheme which provides basic school stationery items and sports equipment to schools in Zambia, other countries in sub-Saharan Africa and the Philippines.
Its weekly meetings will be held at the school in Burnmill Road.
The Interact Clubs idea is proving to be the Rotary organisation’s fastest-growing programme across the globe.
There are more than 250,000 members attending some 11,000 clubs in more than 120 countries. The Interact name is a combination of international and action.
For more information about Market Harborough Rotary Club see its website at www.rotarymarketharborough.org.uk or call club secretary Carole Baldam on 01858 432370.