Guide for Rotary Club Sponsors
and Advisers

one that helps their school or community and one that promotes international understanding. are sponsored by local Rotary clubs. Interact clubs organize two projects every year. which meet at least twice a month. CONTENTS STARTING AN INTERACT CLUB 1 RISK MANAGEMENT FOR WORKING WITH YOUTH 3 SUPPORTING YOUR INTERACT CLUB 4 INTERACT ADVISERS: YOUR INTERACT CHAMPIONS 5 ROTARY DISTRICT SUPPORT 6 INTERACT’S GLOBAL COMMUNITY 7 BEYOND INTERACT: ROTARY’S PROGRAMS FOR YOUNG LEADERS 8 ROTARY RESOURCES 9 . Clubs. Members of sponsor Rotary clubs mentor Interactors as they carry out the projects and develop leadership skills. WHAT IS INTERACT? Interact is a service club for youth ages 12 to 18 who want to connect with other young people and have fun while serving their communities and learning about the world.

and mentors. You clubs co-sponsor. members as sponsors. For a community- from school authorities and assign a faculty adviser to based club. Discuss Do you want to partner with other clubs in your what kind of Interact club your community needs. Be sure to seek out Rotary Youth Exchange and members from one school. online. When engage diverse communities within your district. guides. answer their questions. ask school members from all grades. Set up a meeting to connect potential members. Team up with other members who want to support young leaders in your community. environment for all participants. and its capacity to support the Once you’ve determined the kind of club you’ll sponsor.) people already gather to study. or a leaders in the Rotary database. Rotary members keep the connection between Interact and Rotary strong by reporting the names of club Interact clubs can meet in person. and promote Interact through social media. work with community partners to reach out to young people A successful Interact club starts with a committed and to decide on a meeting location. As district as co-sponsors? Interact clubs may be a sponsor club. If your Interact club is based in a school. working alongside of indigenous and immigrant communities. AGE RANGE The age range for Interact membership is 12 through 18. reach out to prospective members. or connect with their peers. Online meetings also offer a great opportunity to keep members engaged during school breaks. and providing a safe for rural communities and home-schooled students. your club’s interest. Hang up posters in community and youth centers. connecting Interact combination of both — making Interact a flexible option clubs with new opportunities. without access to leadership development support. Young people who are familiar with Rotary. such as family members of CLUB BASE Rotarians. Interact Guide 1 . STARTING AN INTERACT CLUB 1 Take action in your Rotary club If you choose to sponsor a community-based club. Rotary members support Interact in your area. Make Interact the topic at your next Rotary club meeting. play sports. A school-based club draws its leaders. and alumni. while a community-based Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) participants club draws from multiple schools. You can also determine when and where the new club will meet. strengthening local Rotary connections. can be enthusiastic Interactors. chosen age group. Invite young people sponsor Rotary club. you share the responsibilities have two key choices to make when you start your club: of supporting and mentoring Interactors and the age range and the club base. Use your Each Interact club is either school-based or network to promote the club to service-minded young community-based. be sure to invite If you’re sponsoring a school-based club. collaborate with community partners. based on your community needs. you have the freedom to innovate and co-sponsored by up to three Rotary clubs. you can choose to focus on any subset 2 Recruit members between 12 and 18. and confirm their commitment to develop an Interact club. and those Interactors to serve local schools and communities. However. choose a meeting location where young the club. including those with disabilities. You’ll need to gain approval officials how to recruit students. (Learn more about faculty advisers on page 5.

Invite Interactors. it’s important. recognizing the partnership between the Interact Check the Standard Interact Club Constitution and club and your Rotary club and any co-sponsors. Although this is not a requirement energy of these Interactors to create something new. You can also fax or mail a copy of the original form to the appropriate Rotary International office. But your Rotary club’s support is Now that you’ve gathered a group of young leaders eager still important. Scan your completed form and email it to interact@rotary. and obtain the required signatures from your club and district leaders. They’ll develop confidence 4 Make it official as they plan their own meetings and organize their own projects. this event also strengthens the connection between Interactors and your Rotary district. 2  Interact Guide . organize. (Learn more about advisers on page 5. and is completely at the Interact president’s discretion. Hold joint meetings for planning. your Interactors will grow more independent. and take action in the community. or recognize officers. and identify an charter your club with Rotary: enthusiastic adviser — a Rotarian. to begin their Interact service. it will take four to six weeks to charter the club and prepare the certificate. faculty member. Once the certificate arrives. they can club. In order to strengthen the connection between Rotary community partners. In addition to officer positions with the approval of sponsor club(s). school administrators and teachers. Rotary will email it to the sponsor Rotary club president(s) to sign and present to the new Interact club. Bylaws for guidance on officer elections. adopt and Interact. You don’t have to wait for your official certificate to arrive in order to start club activities! Even before you receive it. induct members. in order to comply with youth protection and data policies. family the standard constitution and bylaws. and treasurer. vice president. Rotarians. that Interactors choose to report 6 Keep your Rotary connection themselves rather than have their information shared strong by someone else. That way. 3 Elect officers 5 Celebrate! Each Interact club has a president. Now that their club is official. plan an event to celebrate secretary. Note that there is no fee to charter an Interact club. members of the new Interact club — under the guidance of your club’s members — can meet. Clubs can establish additional the launch of your new Interact club. here’s how to officially assign Rotary members as mentors. or community leader — who can effectively connect Rotary Complete the Interact Club Certification Form. so be receive the latest Interact resources and opportunities innovative! Blend your Rotary traditions with the directly from Rotary. and Interact. Interact club presidents are encouraged to identify themselves to Rotary using the Interact There’s no standard ceremony to charter an Interact Club Contact Information form. Once Rotary receives your paperwork. and district leaders.

To the best of their ability. they make an situations. and abuse — so they can be prevented or these questions as you develop your risk management plan: mitigated. Your club should consider the following points when developing safe procedures for working with ••What happens if someone is injured? Interactors. Contact your Rotary International strives to create and maintain district youth protection officer. ••Follow local guidelines for youth participation in ••Teach participants about safe behavior during online activities. and youth in general: ••What happens if a participant reports ••Follow Rotary’s youth protection policies as inappropriate or dangerous behavior? outlined in the Rotary Code of Policies. and other volunteers must safeguard the children Establish a code of conduct for adult and youth and young people they come into contact with participants. Ensure that any reports of abuse or STATEMENT OF CONDUCT FOR harassment are communicated immediately to district WORKING WITH YOUTH leaders and/or local law enforcement. Develop and implement a club youth protection policy that addresses physical. programs as required by your district policies and and chaperones. mentors. This ••Implement volunteer screening and training includes Rotarian and faculty advisers. sexual. the use investment in the future of their communities and in of power tools. and any applicable policies of the district or emotional abuse. Rotarians’ spouses and partners. Rotary Youth Exchange a safe environment for all youth who participate chair. sexual. RISK MANAGEMENT FOR WORKING WITH YOUTH When Rotary clubs work with youth. including those that involve travel. to coordinate fast action during potentially dangerous Interact Guide 3 . activities. ••Develop and practice your disaster emergency plan. and standards. of social media. the transport of heavy materials. Rotarians. illness. the program or event? and service projects. ••What happens if a natural disaster strikes during ••Ensure adult supervision for As a sponsor club. These rules should reflect local laws. and requirements. ••Purchase adequate liability insurance coverage for your region. cultural and protect them from physical. Interact clubs don’t exist in a vacuum. and emotional abuse and harassment. Stay in regular communication with district leaders email interact@rotary. ••Follow Rotary’s youth travel policies for travel outside the local community. such as e-meetings and the use the program. Work to minimize potential risks in these ways: ••Screen all adults who have significant unsupervised contact with Interactors. all activities are administered responsibly. as well as best practices for youth protection. club. or district governor for additional policy details in Rotary activities. Risk management involves understanding risk management plan that evaluates potential risks and potential risks associated with youth activities — such as provides a solution for each. in line with best practices. they operate in a world that can Interact project and activity planning should include a be dangerous. and Rotary itself — but this investment can succeed only if participation in outdoor service projects. consider injury. If you have any questions about this policy.

Help Interact clubs align their service communication. Encourage clubs to apply for the Presidential universal. and teamwork. STRENGTHEN CONNECTIONS Introduce Interactors to Rotary Youth Leadership GUIDE Awards (RYLA) and Rotaract. plan service projects and events to commemorate World COLLABORATE Interact Week each November. SUPPORTING YOUR INTERACT CLUB Interact members are legal minors. When Rotarians play an active role in the Interact clubs INNOVATE they sponsor. 4  Interact Guide . the support that Rotarians offer is skills. service projects. That’s why Rotarians Showcase Interact club projects in your club newsletter attend their meetings and oversee the financial records and on your district website. Connect university-bound Interact members to Rotaract clubs. Together. of Interact clubs. build connections in the community. Invite Interact officers Share successes and lessons learned from Rotary to RYLA events to build their skills in leadership. part of Rotary’s family. they help Interactors develop leadership Exchange ideas about how to create a vibrant club that skills. Promote Rotary Youth with Rotary’s areas of focus. attend district Interact training events. Although Interact clubs are largely self-sustaining and require little or no financial support LEARN TOGETHER from your club. Volunteer at youth-led service projects and invite Interactors to join you for your own club events. and inspire them to take support Interactors: part in the annual Interact Video Awards. they do need guidance in managing Invite Interactors to your district conferences and their funds. CELEBRATE SUCCESSES Although Interact activities may vary depending Develop programs that recognize Interactors’ leadership on local custom. Here are some ways you can mentor and Citation for Interact Clubs. and become engages members and attracts new ones. and Interact may be PROMOTE SERVICE their first service club experience. Exchange to Interactors.

••Make sure Rotary policies are followed whenever In addition to Rotary-related advisers. ideas. CONNECT AND COACH ••Exchange stories. that club members meet the school’s extracurricular and academic requirements. Although only one adviser is required. Even if an adviser serves for multiple years. ••Secure parental consent for all club social media clubs benefit from having multiple advisers to mentor activities. be sure that Rotary receives the most current information about your Interact adviser or advisers. responsibilities include: ••Help maintain accurate club records and oversee MENTOR AND MOTIVATE club funds. you must submit the Interact Club Contact Information form annually. each Interact club must have sites. work with adults. They support the day-to-day operations of Interact clubs. and local training opportunities. school leaders. volunteers. encourage Interactors to find and community members. By 1 July every year. parents. or community ••Help create a calendar of Interact events. and ensure that everyone who works with the clubs follows Rotary policies to safeguard youth. and support them. and strategies with the Interact advisers’ district Interact chair. at least one adviser. ••Attend meetings and ensure that all members feel function as the primary club liaisons to Rotary safe and respected. ••If conflicts occur. and use Interact clubs must have a faculty adviser who ensures social media. ••Ensure that the club provides contact information to Rotary every year. ••Promote Interact to Rotarians. Rotaract members also make excellent Interact advisers. district leadership events. In order to guide Interactors in service and develop ••Handle equipment needs and logistics at project young leaders’ skills. ••Offer advice during project planning. constructive ways to resolve them. teachers. school-based young people travel. International. make sure they are fair. ••Supervise Interact activities and projects. ••Inspire members during challenging times. INTERACT ADVISERS: YOUR INTERACT CHAMPIONS Interact advisers are adults who serve as advocates FACILITATE AND PROTECT for young leaders in schools and communities. Interact Guide 5 . Advisers can be Rotarians in the sponsor Rotary club. ••Coordinate leadership training for Interact ••Oversee officer elections and provide guidance to officers by connecting them with RYLA. ••Support innovative project ideas.

between Interact and Rotary. Interact to Rotaract and connects alumni with other which is filled by an Interact member. DISTRICT INTERACT REPRESENTATIVE District Committees If there are more than two Interact clubs in your district. and membership outreach. This for Interactors to get involved with Rotary at the district committee promotes Interact. understanding. The district youth service chair identifies opportunities the district Interact chair leads the committee. each district has the DISTRICT ALUMNI CHAIR opportunity to support Interact. and training events to promote and information to Rotary International every year. alumni engagement activities. DISTRICT YOUTH PROTECTION OFFICER The district youth protection officer can advise on District Roles Rotary’s youth protection policies and procedures. Through the following roles. Rotarians serve in all The district alumni chair facilitates the transition from the roles except that of district Interact representative. and training sessions. take part in alumni activities. but Rotary districts also The district Interact chair administers the Interact support Interact. DISTRICT INTERACT COMMITTEE DISTRICT YOUTH SERVICE CHAIR Members may include both Rotarians and Interactors. clubs with one another and to strengthen the link service projects. ROTARY DISTRICT SUPPORT Sponsor Rotary clubs play the primary role in guiding DISTRICT INTERACT CHAIR and mentoring Interact clubs. The governor approves new governor to confirm that you’ve been reported to Interact clubs and co-sponsorship of Interact clubs and Rotary so that you’ll receive emails about Interact appoints the district Interact chair and other leaders. DISTRICT GOVERNOR The district governor supports all programs and Are you a district Interact chair? Ask your district activities in the district. the district Youth Exchange chair can serve as develop their skills. committees. In addition. encourages new clubs. level and facilitates connections between Rotary’s and provides local support for clubs. The strengthen Interact. Interactors can elect a district Interact representative District governors are encouraged to appoint the — an Interact member who encourages Interact clubs following committees to promote and strengthen and fosters a deeper commitment to international Interact and Rotary’s other programs for young leaders. Rotary offers several district-level program and ensures that all clubs submit contact roles. districts should look Interact chair finds innovative ways to connect Interact for opportunities to include Interactors in their events. Rotary opportunities. 6  Interact Guide . It also strengthens connections a valuable resource regarding youth protection and risk between the programs and encourages participants to management. DISTRICT YOUTH SERVICE COMMITTEE This committee supports young leaders’ transition DISTRICT YOUTH EXCHANGE CHAIR through Rotary’s programs and offers them In addition to administering Rotary’s Youth Exchange progressively greater leadership opportunities as they program. programs for young leaders. news and opportunities.

what’s on the minds of Interactors with other Rotarians who actively support young worldwide and how they take action to improve people’s development as leaders. The training should be scheduled at least one month before the leaders take office so they have time to familiarize themselves with their new roles and have questions answered. leadership training. and find partners to connect service project. Interact club committee chairs. in real time. They are an excellent way to inspire your district leaders to bring Interactors and Rotarians community service and provide leadership development together at training events and conferences. with other clubs. Work with in your area. commitment. ••Start with your district. and see the global responsibilities is to provide training for Interact club community of Interact in action. ••Take advantage of the power of the Reach out to other Interact clubs and districts to develop friendships. As a member ••Discover the world of Interact through social of a sponsor club. can exchange ideas with other service-minded leaders in your region. enabling an online exchange or a twin club relationship. Here are some ways to help your Interactors connect brainstorm project ideas. and exchange ideas with peers worldwide. Rotarian advisers. plan a district discussion groups. any Rotary club with an (I) after its find contact information for other Rotarians who name sponsors at least one Interact club. their communities. Exchange ideas in Rotarian-led Introduce the clubs to one another. MULTIDISTRICT MEETINGS Joining together across districts gives Interactors an DISTRICT INTERACT TRAINING even greater opportunity to learn from one another. learn about other cultures. where you can Directory. both locally and globally: ••Explore Rotary’s social network on Rotary. INTERACT’S GLOBAL COMMUNITY One of the best things about Interact is that it connects touch with the sponsor club’s president to set up young leaders with Rotary’s global community. Like Rotary’s Interact Facebook page to international understanding. Interact Guide 7 . you expand your own network. foster media. and invite the members to district Interactors worldwide. them to build relationships. ••Would you like to connect with an Interact A few minutes of research will lead you to club club in a particular region? Check the Official and district websites worldwide. Sign in to My Rotary where you can create your own profile to connect to access a list of Interact clubs in your district with other members who share your Interact and then reach out to sponsor clubs and advisers. and deepen relationships see. where they opportunities. officers. District Events DISTRICT INTERACT CONFERENCES These annual events allow Interactors to share When Interactors and Rotarians learn and serve side by project planning ideas and learn how Interact works side. Get in support Interact. and faculty advisers. One of the district Interact committee’s most important work cooperatively on projects. they build lasting Rotary connections. and share project photos.

and become ambassadors for opportunities for young leaders. confidence. and intensive international exchange experience with a humanitarian or vocational focus for adults up to age 30. Each RYLA has a particular focus — building international projects while developing leadership skills. and contact Rotary Youth Exchange activates the global community your district leaders to find out how you can get of Rotary — districts. peace in more than 70 countries. and schools — 8  Interact Guide . Tell Interactors about these other programs to give students the chance to discover a new culture. or encouraging personal growth — and NEW GENERATIONS SERVICE EXCHANGE all of them give young people an opportunity to develop New Generations Service Exchange is a customized leadership skills and make new friends. better known as Rotaract is the perfect next step after Interact. ROTARY YOUTH LEADERSHIP AWARDS (RYLA) ROTARACT Rotary Youth Leadership Awards. clubs. providing professional development. host families. is a leadership experience developed by clubs and clubs. Learn more on Rotary. open to those ages 18 to 30. so they can experience the full range of Rotary’s learn a new language. carry out local and districts. developing skills. Rotaract RYLA. BEYOND INTERACT: ROTARY’S PROGRAMS FOR YOUNG LEADERS Interact is just one of the ways that Rotary invests in ROTARY YOUTH EXCHANGE young leaders.

materials. Bylaws ••Interact Facebook page — Connect with ••Interact Club Certification Form Interactors and the Rotarians who support them. ••Interact Statement of Policy ••Discussion groups — Share your experiences ••Standard Interact Club Constitution and and ideas with members around the world. and post yours for everyone to ••Visual Identity Guidelines: Rotary’s see. and for more resources for sponsoring. ••Rotary’s Areas of Focus —Introduction to the six areas of focus. typography. procedures established by the RI Board of Directors in support of the RI Constitution and ••Presidential Citation for Interact Clubs — Bylaws Recognize Interact clubs that meet the Rotary president’s challenges to make a positive difference. Questions? Email interact@rotary. ••Rotary Ideas — Find service ideas or seek color palettes. co-sponsoring. Visit Rotary. Interact Guide 9 . volunteers. Programs for Young Leaders — Provides inspiration and best practices related to ROTARY RESOURCES Online Tools Communications and Publications ••Brand Center — Customize and download your Interact club logo for use on promotional ••Young Leaders in Action — Monthly materials. e-newsletter covering Rotary’s programs for young leaders. or partners for your projects. with examples of service Events and Awards projects for each ••World Interact Week — Celebrate Interact’s ••Community Assessment Tools — Guide for global impact during the week surrounding the identifying effective service projects within the founding of the first Interact club on 5 November. and more contributions. and supporting an Interact club. club shirts. including Interact ••Rotary Showcase — Be inspired by completed service projects. community ••Interact Video Awards — Share your Interact ••Rotary Code of Policies — Policies and story for a chance to win this global award.

IL 60201-3698 USA www. This is the 2016 edition of the Interact Guide for Rotary Club Sponsors and Advisers. Please refer to those documents for exact Rotary policy. The information contained in it is based on the Constitution and Bylaws of Rotary International and the Rotary Code of Policies. One Rotary Center 1560 Sherman Avenue Evanston. formerly known as the Interact Handbook. This guide is produced by the Programs for Young Leaders department of Rotary International. Email questions or comments to 654-EN—(516) .org. Changes to the documents listed above by the Rotary International Board of Directors override policy as stated in this guide.rotary.