Isabelle Donile ’16 smiles for the camera at the Ronald McDonald House, along with other members of Social Action Club. She is there for a tour of the Ronald McDonald House building, just one of the many trips she has been on with the club since joining during her freshman year. Throughout her time in the group, she has worked on food drives and Krispy Kreme donut fundraisers, and she aims to participate in the Walk for Autism in May.
“I think it’s a great club,” Donile said. “It’s perfect. It’s for people who care, who want to care, who want to make themselves better.”
This is also the second year in Social Action Club for club sponsor and special education teacher Olga Boutov. According to her, club membership has more than doubled since last year, the latest list of members having 44 students’ names, although the number increases at every meeting.
“Sometimes, there’s not room to sit down,” Boutov said.
Currently, Social Action Club is preparing for an outing to the Feed My Starving Children facility in Aurora on Oct. 25. Last year, each member had to bring an individual donation, but this year the club is planning on leaving a group contribution of $300.
Volunteers at the facility spend two hours packing nutritious foods for the less fortunate around the globe, especially in poverty-stricken countries such as Kenya and Haiti.
“There’s lots of places that aren’t like America, with strong government and strong people,” Donile said. “It’s a great charity to help people who don’t have opportunities like us.”
“What they do is very commendable and honorable,” she said.
Social Action Club is working for local as well as global charities. According to Donile, the club has changed the community by helping organizations around the area.
The club will be teaming up with Relay for Life on March 20 for a dancing event, Teens for Teens. They hope to get Irish Dancers, Eurythmics, Steppers, and the Greek Club dancers to perform. The profits from the show will go to Teen Living Programs of Chicago, a non-profit that provides shelter, vocational training, and health care for Chicago’s homeless youth. Other local charities they plan to donate to include Hope Chest and Secret Santa.
The reason Boutov started sponsoring Social Action Club was to help students feel connected to the world outside LT, she said. Donile feels that she has experienced this connection.
“[Being in the club] made me realize that I could be a better person than I was before, that I can make the world a better place, that I can convince other people to do better things to the world or the environment,” Donile said.
She’s not the only person who has been affected by the club.
“There’s lots of people that change,” she said. “There’s always new people coming in and changing themselves.”