Share the Magic of Rotary Youth Service
Rotary Making a Difference
What a fitting theme that resonates with District 5170 Youth Services! Through our programs and the youth of our district, we exemplify Rotary Making a Difference. The amazing involvement and service our youth are engaged into is an inspiration to all.
District Governor Orrin’s theme this year is “developing lifelong friendships, while making a difference”. Our youth programs, sponsored by our District and our Rotary clubs, is something every Rotarian and Advisor should be proud of. The connections we are building with each other, whether Rotarians, mentoring adults, or the huge network of youth is invaluable.
Not only are we making a difference in the world, we are making a difference right here in each other’s lives in Silicon Valley. Whether through
•          the 7500 Interactors in our District
•          to the 210 students who attend RYLA each year and the 40+ RYLA volunteer support staff
•          to the 100s of youth who graduate from our ELC programs
•          to the exchange students and their host families here and abroad
•          to the youth we assist through or Children at Risk program with new computers
•          to the nearly 200 students participating in our Speech Contest
•          to the efforts we take in ensuring our youth are protected
we are “developing lifelong friendships, while making a difference.”
Introducing our District Youth Services Team!
Each year teens from our district are given the opportunity to attend Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA). Ben Macatangay and Joanne Mansch are our District Co-Chairs and Jenn Chang is our Camp Director. Our district is able to provide a weeklong leadership camp for our teens. This program leaves a lasting impression on all that attend and can be witnessed by their testimonials and those of their parents. The RYLA campers attend leadership workshops, participate in pay-it-forward activities and learn more about themselves while bonding with the other campers.
Youth Exchange is often stated as one of Rotary’s best kept secrets. Our District Chair is Darlene de la Cerna and is supported by Mark Junod, Kevin Greenlee and Lorie Alemenia. Our short & long term exchange programs offer a tremendous opportunity for our youth. Our teens gain the opportunity to be one with another culture, grow in their maturity and confidence, learn another language, forge lifelong friendships and learn about themselves as they embrace the broadening of their view of the world.
Interact 5170 is recognized as being the largest and most effective District in the world. The team leading Interact 5170 is Bob Pfahnl & Julie Herndon District Co-Chairs, Raymond Yin - Governor and Rachel Chu - Lt Governor. A group of Interactors attend the Rotary International convention each year to “tell their story” and inspire Rotarians around the world. We have 100 Interact clubs in our District, including a few at the middle school level. There are over 7500 active Interactors who come together as one team to complete over 70,000 hours of community service and fundraise close to $100,000 annually for their International Project.
ELC can be described as an entrepreneurial learning program targeting high school juniors. The District has 3 ELC programs, coordinated by Arley Marley, working with:
•          ELC #1 (Los Gatos, Los Gatos Morning, San Jose Downtown) Jennifer Simmons:
•          Enterprise Institute (Oakland) David Barron:
•          The South Bay (Milpitas, Santa Clara) and West Valley (Saratoga, Cupertino, Sunnyvale) Julie Herndon:
Participating students are taught the basics for entrepreneurial development along with a full range of principles for developing a fully functioning company for an idea.
Many youth accept the challenge to participate in our annual Richard D King Speech Contest. Our District Speech Contest Chair is Kamal Della. Student prepare and present a speech that is based on our Rotary theme and incorporating the Rotary 4-way test. Students compete at the club, area, regional and district level, proving them opportunities to grow in their abilities and confidence, while learning more about Rotary. Many club members look forward to the meetings our youth deliver these motivational speeches, furthering our belief in our future leaders.
Rotary is committed to ensuring all youth of our district that attend Rotary events do so in a safe and respectful environment and are protected according to government standards. Our District Youth Protection Officer is Scot Smithee, assisted by Phil Dean. They will continue ensuring all Rotarians and our volunteers leading or involved with youth programs have completed our youth protection certification. Fulfilling this duty safeguards the interests of Rotary Clubs and Rotarians by minimizing their risk of liability.
District Children at Risk Chair is Bob Goetsch. This program serves as a bridge between Rotarians and organizations serving youth. These organizations take several forms and include juvenile courts, county and social services agencies, and our community non-profits, including putting computers in the hands of disadvantage youth.
Chris Miller is our Youth Services Communication Lead. He will assist our team in communication within our district and within RI. Chris has extensive training in youth programs and is committed to helping us achieve the next level of making a difference in the lives of our youth.
We are proud Rotarians of District 5170 to have a team of Rotarians and volunteers who live and breathe Rotarian values and commit to providing tremendous experiences for our youth, and invite you to get involved!
Margarethe Pfeffer
District Youth Service Chair
Los Altos Sunset Rotary Club