Posted on Nov 27, 2017
Rotary International is indeed giving back to Rotary club members all around the world, who dedicate their time and resources to selfless humanitarian services, while touching the lives of the people in their communities.
This impact Rotary has on its members is not limited to Rotarians alone but also extends to Rotary International’s sponsored organization for teenagers- The Interact Club.  
In this interview with The Governor’s Newsletter, the District Interact Representative 2017/2018, Rotary International, District 9110, Nigeria, Fausiat Ibrahim, a SS2 student of Community Senior High School, Wasimi in Maryland area of Lagos state tells us how Rotary, through the Interact Club of her school, has touched her life. 
Why did you join the Interact club?
My sister is also a member of the Interact club. She joined before me. She was actually the one who motivated me to join the club through her lifestyle. Also, when I was in primary school, I had some friends in secondary school that were members of the Interact Club and they used to tell me whenever they participated in any End Polio Now activity, quiz and some other Rotary activities. 
Then, I started getting inquisitive to know what polio is all about. Before then, I used to wonder if polio is the same as Apollo (burning, itching and swelling of the eyes). Rotary helped me to know what polio is all about. The club has also helped me to be abreast with current happenings in Nigeria and around the world. 
Since my primary school days, I have been hearing about Rotary. I used to see the projects they executed in my school, such as donation of school bags, sandals and some other school items. Although I didn’t know much about Rotary then but when I got into Junior Secondary School and my school’s Interact Club was certified two years ago, I became the charter (first) president of the club.
What have you been benefiting from the club since you joined?
Rotary, through the Interact Club has really influenced me positively. I have been able to build my self confidence and determination. I used to be a shy person before I joined the Interact Club. I get scared whenever I am being called upon to speak in public but when I joined the club, all that changed. 
Also, I used to get angry easily but I have been able to learn how to calm myself as a good leader. I used to be addicted to watching movies. I spent most of my leisure time watching movies but when I joined the club, I started developing interest in news broadcasts. Interact club is ideal for young people like me. The club benefits members in the area of knowledge, exposure, among other areas.
I want to say a very big thank you to Rotary Club of Maryland. I am very grateful that my school is privileged to have an Interact club which may not have been made possible without the support of Rotary Club of Maryland.
What areas has Rotary club been helping the Interact club in your school?
Rotary has equipped my school library, refurbished the school’s toilet facility, the sick bay which used to be in an awful state has also been refurbished and equipped. The club has donated exercise books among other items to my school and also provided some gaming facilities in my school. 
All we need now is for them to always send Rotarians to attend our meetings so as to guide us and provide us with adequate knowledge on the club and how to move the club forward, and also to encourage new and existing members of the club, making them know why they must remain with the club. 
Right now, I know am determined to learn more about the Interact Club and Rotary but if there is nobody to motivate me, I may eventually lose interest in the club and give up.
For instance, I have some friends who only attend our meetings whenever a snack will be distributed. So whenever I go to invite them for our meeting, they will ask me if they will be given biscuit, sweet, etc. We need them to know that they don’t need biscuits and sweets to attend the club meetings because the impact the club will have on them is far more than those snacks.
Do your parents know that you are a member of the Interact Club?
Yes, they do.
How have your parents reacted to you and your sister becoming members of the club?
Well, I missed last year’s edition of Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) because my mum didn’t know much about Rotary or Interact then. I was still new in the club then. I also didn’t know much about the club but now that she knows, she knows the projects Rotary Club has been executing in my school. 
My mum knows my weak point. She knows I used to be a shy person. Before I joined, I made her understand that the club will help me build my self esteem and she agreed. My dad doesn’t really know much because he is a military man. He doesn’t stay at home often but he also knows about it. Insha Allah, I will attend this year’s edition of RYLA. 
Why do you want to attend the forthcoming edition of Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA)?
The experiences past RYLA participants narrate whenever they return, such as their experience with the water, the fun activities, the unexpected way a participant can be called upon to carry out a task, the military training, the exposure, the challenges because they will help to bring out the best in me.
Many of the past participants that I have come across always have this self confidence that I admire a lot. I have a senior in school whose name is senior Ibrahim. I know he already had a certain level of self confidence in him but after he participated in RYLA, he became more self confident. I want to be like him. I want to be able to address people without any fear.
Your testimonies so far imply that in future, when you have your own children, you will encourage them to join the Interact Club?
Yes, I will love them to join the Interact club. 
Would you like to become a Rotarian in the near future?
For sure, I will.
What is your message to your fellow Interactors out there?
My message to my fellow Interactors is that they should be determined to achieve whatever they set their mind to achieve. They should be focused in life. They should not look back when people mock them. 
If they want to organise any programme for instance, and the programme eventually couldn’t hold for some reasons, they should not feel bad. They should participate actively in their club activities. Also, in their various schools, they should strive to be among the best students.
What do you have to say to your peers who are not members of the Interact club?
All I want to tell them is that they should join the Interact club in their schools because the club will help them to be the best even among the best. They need to join so that they can be as happy and as successful as I am today.