GREENVILLE—The Kiwanis Aktion Club Member of the Month for January 2023, is Larissa Pugh.
Pugh became emotional when she said that it felt very good to be named member of the month.
Pugh is a newer member, and has been in the club for about a year. She was nominated by her peers, and chosen because she goes over and beyond when volunteering, and helping other.
“She’s always been very helpful,” Sue Huston, Darke DD Community Connections Coordinator said. “She goes above and beyond to buy things for those in need.”
“A long time ago, my Nanny, which would be my grandma, would buy toys, and we’d ask, ‘Are those toys for us?’ Pugh said. “She’d go, ‘No. Those are toys for other kids who don’t have toys.'”
Huston added that she loves how Pugh has continued on giving in memory of her Nanny and Poppy [grandpa].
In addition to buying toys and groceries for those in need, Pugh enjoys volunteering with the Grace Resurrection Community Center’s clothing bank.
Pugh lives alone in Greenville, and loves to thrift clothing in her free time. She often goes to various local consignment shops and is even considering reselling some of her purchases online.
In the month of January, 36 Aktion Club members volunteered 113 hours of their time.
Recently, the club started their food drive, which they will be holding all of February, to collect different paper products for locals in need for the Grace Resurrection Center food bank and Union City Help Center.
The club will compete against other area Aktion Clubs to see who can collect the most items.
The club worked with the Greenville High School (GHS) Key Club, and the athletic department, who will allow the club to collect items at the GHS boys basketball game this Friday, this is a partnership that has existed for multiple years.
“We want to thank Key Club for their partnership, and the students, for helping us serve our community,” Huston said.
Items needed for donation include: feminine hygiene products, paper towels, toilet paper, napkins, toiletries and cleaning products. You can drop items off at the Darke DD building, Greenville High School, Tri-Village High School, Your Happy Place, Art Sense or Active Day.
Aktion Club members have also planned out several areas where they will hold community clean ups.
Last fall the group began their clean up efforts by covering up the graffiti on the Towne House Motel in Greenville.
Recently, the club received a large quantity of children’s books from the Friends Advocates and Neighbors Club. While they have given some of the books to their book club and early intervention, there are still a large amount left over. The club plans to plant boxes full of the remaining donated books in local laundromats, for people to read and take home for free.
Looking forward into March, which is DD Awareness month, the club will focus on education and awareness, with a statehouse visit and local school visits.
Club members will travel to the Ohio Statehouse on March 1, to recognize March as DD Awareness Month. During the visit they will also meet and speak with State Reps Jena Powell (R-District 80) and Angie King (R-District 84) about DD Awareness.
The club will also participate in a proclamation with the Darke County Board of Commissioners on March 2, in which the board will recognize the month of March as DD Awareness Month.
The proclamation with take place at the Darke DD building, at 5844 Jaysville-St Johns Rd, Greenville at 1 p.m.
In addition, there will also be a smart mobile home, from 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. that will showcase all of the different technology now available for those with developmental disabilities.
The Darke County Aktion Club recently became the largest Aktion Club in Ohio, with 58 members. They also were just named a Distinguished Club for the year of 2021/22 by the Ohio District of Kiwanis International.
For more info on The Kiwanis Aktion Club, follow the Darke County DD Facebook page. For questions about the club, or questions regarding the food drive, contact Huston at email@example.com.