Monticello High School Interact Club searching for socks to help the homeless

Members of a Monticello High School service club are capitalizing on a unique opportunity to help the homeless.

Members of the local Interact chapter want to collect 500 pairs of socks and need the community’s immediate help to reach that goal.

Interact is Rotary International’s service club for young people ages 12 to 18. Interact clubs are sponsored by individual Rotary clubs, which provide support and guidance.

Students at Monticello High School work with the Monticello Rotary Club on various projects.

Grace Schillewaert is heading up the Interact Club’s “Socks For Souls” effort.

“We’re going to have a box at Friday’s Rotary Fish Fry, and we’re planning on having a collection box set up at the Monticello Community Center next week,” Schillewaert said, adding the idea for the sock drive came from a leadership conference she attened earlier this year.

“The main speaker told a story about how whenever he talked to homeless people, they always needed socks,” she said. “They would have blisters all over their feet, and in Minnesota to not have socks can be very chilly at times.”

Schillewaert realized the lack of socks is not just an issue within larger cities, but Monticello as well.

“I’ve spoken to some foster parents in our community who’ve said that they’ve had kids come to them without socks, and it just thought it would be a good idea to bring it to Interact Club,” she said.

The Interact Club at high school is conducting the sock drive throughout the entire school.

“We’ve actually made it into a grade versus grade competition to get the whole school involved,” she said. “Whoever collects the most socks will have their lunch period extended by 5 minutes for a couple of days. Our goal as of now is 500 pairs of socks for the school, and we’re currently at 250 as of last Friday,” she said.

Schillewaert said she joined Interact because she wanted to find ways to volunteer both within our community and without.

“Interact gives us a platform to volunteer at places we’ve been to, and places we have not. Just having a fun opportunity within high school to volunteer and to impact others is so important,” Schillewaert said.