RotarACT Club receives grant to provide financial relief and remove invasive species

A grant from the Mountaintop Rotary Club of Highlands and matching grant funds from Rotary district 7670 will enable the new RotarACT Club of Highlands to launch its first project.

The project has the goal to remove non-native invasive plant species in and around the town of Highlands, community roadways, and local nonprofit owned properties.

In addition to the benefits to our shared landscape, the primary motivation of this plan is to provide financial relief to working people of the community who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic by employing them as workers in the project.

Map of invasive plant species in Highlands.

“We are excited to launch our first project at a time when there is a great need,” said RotarACT President, Rachel Kinback. “Many working people in Highlands and surrounding towns have lost jobs or had their hours cut, and many did not receive a stimulus check. This means substantial financial burden and stress for many of our neighbors. Our club is passionate about providing financial assistance to those in need. This project will also provide a platform for something that we can do together to beautify and take pride in our town and help each other make it through a very difficult time”

RotarACT’s first Project Workday will take place Saturday, Sept 12. Workers will be asked for a time commitment of 9 a.m.- 3 p.m. The club agreed that everyone working will be paid for a full 6 hours at $15/hour in the form of a $90 Ingles gift card. 

Lunch will be provided by Mountaintop Rotary. With the current amount of funding, the project will be able to hire a maximum of 40 workers.

In coordination with Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust Stewardship Coordinator Kyle Pursel, the club has mapped the incidence of dangerous invasive species in the area to create the project plan. After first getting permission from the relevant landowners, the club will coordinate with other area nonprofits to assemble invasive species removal squads that will remove the targeted species during the project workday.

If you are interested in working for the project, please send an email to the RotarACT Club at RotarACT828@gmail.com.

If you would like to join RotarACT, volunteer to work on the project, or are willing to loan tools for the workday, please also reach out to us with an email.

RotarACT clubs bring together people ages 18 and older to exchange ideas with leaders in the community, develop leadership and professional skills, and have fun through service.

In communities worldwide, Rotary and RotarACT members work side by side to take action through service. The Highlands RotarACT Community Club, sponsored by Mountaintop Rotary, was formed in 2020.

For further information, contact Rachel Kinback at 610.955.9356 or email the club at RotarACT828@gmail.com.

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