Seed money from Rotary club foundations is being sought to help fund a badly needed and requested brand-new JR RYLA program for our district.  Due to the rapid growth in the number of middle school and junior high Interact clubs in recent years, there has been an increasing need for a leadership challenge program for these youth in grades 6-8.  Since they are not eligible to participate in the high school age programs of RYLA, Rotary Youth Exchange and Interact Ambassadors to Kenya, they have been calling for a leadership development program for their own age group.
We are excited to announce that our district’s first JR RYLA, for youth in grades 6-8, has been scheduled for June 17-20, 2020, at Camp Wamatochick in Prescott.  Ken Kelley, veteran Rotary Youth Services leader, will be chairing this new program and will serve as the Camp Director.  Assisting him will be Jeri Robertson, the Faculty Advisor to the middle school Interact Club at Arizona Charter Academy in Surprise.  The new program is expected to strengthen and continue to multiply our Interact clubs for this age group, and to be a “feeder” program for our outstanding senior high RYLA programs.
While we anticipate that most of the expected 80 JR RYLA delegates will be coming from our Interact clubs, the program will be open to any youth in this age group who wish to apply.  We will be setting up a similar online application for this new program to the one we have for our two senior high RYLA camps.
Club foundations and individuals who are willing to help us launch this new program, for which no district funding exists, can send contributions payable to Rotary District 5495, for JR RYLA, to District Treasurer Jeanie Morgan, P.O. Box 1807, Chandler, AZ 85224