Camp sponsored by Rotary
Photo: Ilanit Shomron

Volunteer: Israel has high quality youth

'Our camp proves that there are teenagers in this country who contribute to society without asking for anything in return.' Rotem Oliver, 17.5, invites you to a world of nothing but good deeds

Hello. My name is Rotem Oliver. I am 17.5 years old, a 12th grader at Ort Rabin School in Gan Yavne. This is my fourth year in Interact – a service club for young people sponsored by the Rotary organization.


Interact members are 14 to 18 years old – high school age. Interact gives people of these ages a chance to take part in all kinds of voluntary, fun and meaningful initiatives. For us it's a chance to develop leadership skills and take initiative, as well as meet new friends.


The Interact club is operated and supported by Rotary – an apolitical global organization of businesspeople and leading professionals associated with social clubs, regardless of their religion, nationality, race or gender, who engage in voluntary humanitarian activity in the community and the world.


Positive role model (Photo: Gabi Oren)


Interact's biggest annual project is the camp being held for the fifth time this year, a five-day camp for children who have no money to pay for an ordinary camp. For five days, Interact youth engage in different activities for children from the first to fifth grade, both activities prepared by the instructors and external activities like a trip on the Magic 1 cruise ship or a fun day in a swimming pool in Gan Yavne.


Operating such a camp is not easy, it's even very hard, but it's still worth all the efforts involved. This huge project, which we have been working on for so long, doesn’t just help Interact youth integrate – it also allows us to give to needy children.


Seeing the children's happy faces at the end of each day, and knowing that it's all because of us, is worth all the effort. Throughout the year we, the Interact youth, enjoy volunteering and giving back to the community. But I think the highest point of fun and giving this year is the camp week.


This is the third year I have been active in the Interact Camp, and every year this camp just gets better. Every year I feel better at the end of each camp day, every year I feel like I have done more, like I have progressed and developed thanks to the help I give others.


We get a lot of positive responses, but there are still people who don't understand the essence of volunteering. As far as they're concerned, operating a camp without getting any money for it is being suckers. There are people who find volunteering unnecessary.


When I joined Interact three years ago, I didn't think volunteering would become so meaningful for me, and I didn't think it would be so good. On the very first year I discovered how much fun it is to do something for someone, when in return you get a smile or a kind word. And it's important enough for me to keep on doing it.


Interact's activity is aimed at proving that there are quite a few teenagers in Israel who work and contribute to society without asking for anything in return. So all those who have negative feelings about "today's youth" should read this and realize that our society has high quality youth.


Consider yourself invited

Rotem Oliver is right. Israel's youth has values. And not just the youth, but people of all ages and from all parts of society.


The fifth annual Good Deeds Day, initiated by the Ruach Tova association, will be held on April 5.


Some 70,000 people volunteered as part of last year's Good Deeds Day, proving that the spirit of solidarity and social involvement is still very strong here. This year, more than 100,000 people are expected to volunteer. You're invited to join too – whether as individuals or as a group.


To volunteer as individuals – click here

To volunteer as a group – click here



פרסום ראשון: 03.08.11, 09:04
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