Press release from Bob Jehn at Rotary Club of Burney-Fall River Oct 4:
Since the fall of 2014, the Rotary Club of Burney-Fall River has been quietly
engaged in a program at both Burney and Fall River Elementary Schools
that provides mentoring to first through third grade students.
The idea for the venture was originally conceived by Rotarian Sally Armstrong as a way to teach table manners to the elementary level students, but quickly morphed into an avenue to provide a sounding board for the children in the form of a non-judgmental adult. School counsellors have lauded the positive changes in some children because of the program.
Students who were quiet and didn’t interact with others have become more
outgoing and interactive, and students who were loud and boisterous have
learned that they are able to garner attention in other more acceptable
Students who participate in the program are chosen by the school behavior
paraprofessionals, Jeanine Ferguson in Burney and Sheri Crane in Fall
River. Rotarians visit each school once a week at lunchtime, Tuesdays in Burney and Wednesdays in Fall River. It seems that being chosen to sit at
the “Rotary Table” at lunchtime is considered an honor by the students, and many lobby their teachers and counselor for the opportunity. Typically, three Rotarians sit with 8-10 students each week and ask them how their day is going while engaging the students in conversation about a variety of topics.
The Rotary Club plans to continue the program indefinitely, as long as it
provides a benefit to the students and the community. The Rotary Club of
Burney-Fall River was chartered in 1974 and currently has 43 members of
the community who are active in the Club. The Club also sponsors two
Interact Clubs, one at each High School. Interact is an organization for
students ages 12-18 who perform community service and promote