If there’s one thing I could die eating, it’s a nice hunk of crab meat. However, I think I tasted it at its finest, when I paired it with an evening of volunteering with the Fresno State Rotaract Club. Rotaract is a club affiliated with the more widely known Rotary Club, but is directed towards a younger demographic. Rotaract brings together individuals between eighteen and thirty years of age, enabling them to “exchange ideas with leaders in the community, develop leadership and professional skills, and have fun through service.” Rotaract clubs work alongside Rotary clubs internationally, and Fresno State is fortunate to have a chapter of its own.
The president of our local chapter, Kyle Smith, enlisted the aid from some of the Smittcamp Family Scholar students (of which I am a member), to assist with one of their
largest fundraisers of the year: the Cioppino Dinner. The funds from this dinner are used to “champion peace, fight illiteracy and poverty, promote clean water and sanitation, and fight disease.”
The causes behind this dinner were enough to spark commitment; however, I also felt a sense of gratitude, as I’ve personally been the recipient of some of the Rotarians’ philanthropic efforts. In high school, I was able to take part in a foreign exchange program through Rotary that made an incredible impact on my life. As a result, I was eager to help raise the funds necessary to accomplish the following: send another student like myself to a foreign nation, immunize another child against polio, or create jobs for financially strained communities.
Throughout the evening, on top of all the incredible goodness that was to come of our labor, I had more fun and more canollis than I possibly have ever had (particularly in regards to the latter of the two). I met a number of Rotarians who were nothing but a joy to be around, and even took a shot as a spotter for the auctioneer. However, if you’re reading
this blog simply because of the bowl of heaven in the photo above—yes, I ate my fill of cioppino. That in itself is reason enough in my mind to look forward to volunteering with them again next year.
Ciao, e grazie!