RadioRotary interviews Carmel Rotarian Marjorie Keith and recent Mahopac High School student Robert Solerno about the role of the 4-H Club of Putnam Country. Keith is the Executive Director of Putnam County’s branch of the Cornell Cooperative Extension, which sponsors 4-H clubs, while Solerno is not only an enthusiastic member of 4-H, but also a former member of the Mahopac High School Interact Club. Although we think of 4-H (which stands for Head, Heart, Hands, and Health) primarily as rural, the club thrives in Putnam County, which is not rural, with programs or divisions devoted to pet care, media, crafts, the environment, and leadership. A major event is the annual Putnam Country 40H Fair in Kent, NY, that features many local booths devoted to 4-H-related activities and activities that interest children as well as a famous chicken dinner on Saturday night of the Fair.
In a live show at Millbrook Rotary RadioRotary interviews George Ouimet, this year’s president of the Millbrook High Interact Club, and Luisa Pereira, this year’s incoming Youth Exchange (YEX) student to Millbrook Rotary. Ouimet describes recent projects of Interact, including two canned food drives, two recent blood drives, the Purple Pinkie Project, and the Scott Meyer Memorial 5K Run. George joined Interact in his sophomore year because he wanted to give back to his community. Luisa Pereira competed with 180 other students to become a YEX representative from Brazil. Being a YEX student and living with three families in the Millbrook School District for a whole school year is not the entire exchange experience. She has traveled to Vermont, Connecticut, and New Jersey, and visited New York City several times. Luisa strongly recommends the YEX experience—the best year of her life so far.
RadioRotary interviews recovering addict Cara Mia Bacchiochi about her street ministry called Hope on a Mission HOAM, a volunteer effort to help women who are homeless because of addiction to drugs or alcohol. Working in the city of Poughkeepsie, Bacchiochi and volunteer helpers distribute water and such personal care items as baby wipes to homeless women on a weekly basis. As with other parts of the United States, Poughkeepsie is undergoing a wave of addiction spurred by the introduction of powerful opiate pain relievers and the availability of cheap heroin. In the late 1980s, Bacchiochi was herself an addict, but in 1990 she entered recovery programs. With the help of her church, she hope someday to open a storefront that would make it easier to carry out her mission. In the meantime, Hope on a Mission HOAM could use help in the form of donations and volunteers. See its Facebook page for information on how to help.
Salvation Army Captains Sam and Jenny Alarcon visit RadioRotary to describe some of the many ways that The Salvation Army works to solve problems in Poughkeepsie and the Hudson Valley. The Salvation Army, founded in London by William Booth in 1865, is a worldwide Christian church that is organized along military lines. Its mission includes meeting human needs without discrimination. From its first days it has focused on helping the homeless, addicts and alcoholics, and the hungry. Many may know it from collecting money outside store entrances at holiday time—the bell ringers in uniform are Salvationists, while many others are volunteers. The Alarcons describe various Salvation Army projects from after school for children to centers for seniors.