The Swartz Creek Dragon Optimists met this afternoon with 9 students/members present (names not given without explicit and appropriate permission) and 5 adults (school sponsor/teacher Jane Wensko, guest speaker Don Brose and Julie Forbush from the Grand Blanc Club, and Jeff Dennings and Greg Hilliker from the West Flint Club) to share a light meal of pancakes made in Room 509 by Miss Wensko with help from the students.

The Dragons Club has decided that the first Thursday meeting of every month will bring in a guest speaker and nourishment for the famished students, and this was the the inaugural event, with Don Brose as guest speaker and facilitator. Don has served as Vice President of Optimist International, Governor of the Michigan District of OI,and other significant service roles, including mentoring and building several youth Clubs in our state. He talked about his experiences ans several Club models, structures, and projects for service and/or fundraisers that the Dragons might consider, including sponsorships of blood drives, artistic performances, school dances, candy sales, nursing home poster, and community cleanup events. He also asked the students about their personal areas of interest and noted such altruistic areas as EAP/HR work, assisting with animal shelters, an working with children who have not had adequate parenting. By way of demonstrating an “icebreaker” that might be used in generating interest in meetings and allowing people to begin to interact more comfortably, he challenged us all to “line up according to age, without speaking”, creating a lot of fun conversation while working out a shared task.

Julie Forbush, also present from the Grand Blanc Club, was present and volunteered to assist the fledgling Dragons group in setting up and executing effective money management and tracking. (Her Flint Area School Employees’ Credit Union work role makes her uniquely suited to this task!)

As the Dragons President led us in the recitation of the Optimist Creed, we all left the meeting encouraged by the energy and investment of the young people in their school and community and excited about future prospects and collaboration.

Until next time, “Promise Yourself…”