Stress and challenges have inundated us over the last 18 months, and as our kids move back to the classroom it’s crucial we not ignore the pandemic’s impact on their mental health. That’s why Maple Valley Rotary is dedicating its 2021 auction fund-a-need to help fund a Mental Health First Aid program for our youth.

Working in partnership with the Tahoma School District and the City of Maple Valley, this program will give staff members the tools to recognize when a youth needs support for early intervention and prevention. The Mental Health First Aid program is designed to help those who work with youth to:

• Understand signs and symptoms of mental illness/substance abuse among youth

• Show them how to interact with a youth in crisis

• Provide tools to connect youth to resources and help

Additional proceeds for this year’s event will fund our ongoing support of organizations and causes like the Maple Valley Food Bank, Vine Maple Place, the Greater Maple Valley Community Center, Shop-With-A-Cop, and Tahoma High School student academic and vocational scholarships – just to name a few.

On behalf of the Rotary Club of Maple Valley, I invite you to participate in this year’s event that includes virtual online bidding for silent items and a YouTube livestream broadcast for live items at 8 p.m. on Friday evening, Oct. 8.

Thank you in advance for joining Maple Valley Rotary in this effort — Your donations will make a huge positive impact in our community and the lives of our youth. Our auction theme this year is ‘Rally For The Valley ’21,’ and our children and community need us to step up and rally on their behalf!

Special thanks to our premier auction sponsor, Overlake Medical Clinics, and all our sponsors for their generous support.

– Rock Jenkins, Maple Valley Rotary President Elect