Posted on Jun 02, 2017
In the true Rotary spirit of “Service Above Self” high schoolers in the island of Bermuda have raised funds to help the victims of the Fire that rendered the residents of 1 Hawley Terrace in Yonkers, homeless.
Students from the Bermuda High Schools for Girls watched the fire on television and wanted to do something to help. They were part of the island’s Interact Club – the young peoples arm of Rotary, which brings together young people ages 12-18 to develop leadership skills while discovering the power of Service Above Self.  There are nearly 470 thousand members of some 20,300 Interact Clubs in 159 countries.    30 young students from various Bermuda Schools are members of the Interact Club on the Island, established 2 years ago by the Hamilton Rotary Club with support from the other 3 Rotary Clubs in Bermuda. The Bermuda Interactors are coordinated by Cathy Bassett a very active Rotarian of the Hamilton Rotary Club.
The determined teens heard of the Fund set up by the Rotary Club of Yonkers-East Yonkers and decided to raise money for the Fund.  They got permission from their school and planned, organized and held a Bake Sale, from which they raised $495.  After expenses, they were able to send $450 for the Yonkers Rotary Fire Fund – to benefit families they have never seen or met.  Yonkers Rotary President Mahbub Ahmad said, “This is a touching example of Rotary – making a difference, - young children going out of their way to help families far away, they’ve never seen or met.”
The Rotary Club of Yonkers-East Yonkers had responded quickly to the disaster and set up the Fund within 48 hours of the fire, announced it on their website asking for online and mailed-in donations. After the first round of collections, $250 cash cards were distributed to 14 uninsured residents of the building who responded to the offer of help.  Residents were invited to the Club’s recent Pancake Breakfast – many residents attended. The Fund has received donations from Westchester Rotary Clubs and from other individuals and organizations, among them the Schubert Foundation.  The fund officially closed on 31 May and the remaining funds are being made available to the residents with the most needs