Monday, February 28, 2011

Local Member Wins International Competition

As posted on the Trib Local, Downers Grove, IL, February 27, 2011.


SEASPAR Aktion Club member Bridget Brown, of Darien, ( Pictured at right with her award.) won first place in the International Aktion Club Speech Contest. The Aktion Club is a unique community service club for adults living with disabilities, formed through a joint sponsorship of the Downers Grove and Lombard Kiwanis Clubs and SEASPAR. The Aktion Club has more than 200 clubs in seven nations. The theme of this year’s speech contest was “How Are You a Hero in Your Community.” To reach the international level of the competition, Bridget had to place first in the Illinois-Eastern Iowa District. SEASPAR Executive Director, Susan Friend, stated that “Bridget is a talented young lady and delivered an exceptional speech. She is a speaker and advocate for people with disabilities. The club is very proud of her accomplishments.” Six other members competed in the speech contest. Over the past four years Aktion Club members have won first place three times in the International Speech Competition, and also received a second place.

The Aktion Club also won first place in the Annual Scrapbook competition in the Illinois-Eastern Iowa District. The group compiled a scrapbook highlighting activities in their year, with sections about community service, SEASPAR (their sponsoring agency), and published media about their club.

Another program taken on by the Aktion Club was their sponsorship of the Winter Wonderland Dance, with the purpose of raising funds for community charities that the club selected. Recipients of the funds included Operation Support Our Troops Illinois, local food pantries, Senior Home Sharing, and PADS. The group will be presenting checks to these organizations in the near future. Seventy-five people attended the dance, and $1,200 was raised. The dance was held at the Clarendon Hills Park District.

Other service contributions by the club in the past few months include the sponsorship of a Downers Grove Township family at Thanksgiving, adopting a Downers Grove family at Christmas, purchasing books through Anderson’s Book Shop Book Angels program, and the purchase of three bed kits for Sleeping Children Around the World (an International Aktion Club Project). They are also supporting Samaritan’s Purse with donations.

Those interested in learning more about the club should contact Susan Friend at SEASPAR, 630-960-7600.