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Posted on Aug 12, 2019

Junior Chamber seeks to involve young people in community

The Quincy community has one more way to get its youth involved in the community.
The Quincy Valley Chamber of Commerce has unveiled a “Junior Chamber,” where high schoolers can, in many cases, get their first taste of being community leaders.
The idea of a Junior Chamber started about five months ago, said Julie Putnam, of Trinity Gardens Lavender Farms, one of the grown-ups helping coordinate the launching of the project. Putnam, who is president of the local chamber of commerce, credited John Akins Jr., president-elect of the chamber, as an “integral” part of getting the Junior Chamber up and running. Akins was not available for comment for this article.
The Junior Chamber has a president, a vice president and a board of directors, with the leaders signing on to a minimum two-year commitment. The vice president this year will be the president next year, Putnam said.
Among the Junior Chamber’s very first projects, the youth held a booth at one of the July farmers markets at Lauzier Park.
“Letting people know that they are a group, that they are really into the community,” said Putnam of the booth. “They did a great job.”
The chamber wants the Junior Chamber members to grow not just as leaders but also in their knowledge, earning “an education on a local business level,” Putnam said, with an emphasis in learning the unique needs and wants of their hometown, as well as the ins and outs of the area’s successful businesses.
“We are not Wenatchee, we are not Moses (Lake), we are not Spokane,” she said. “We are Quincy. So what are the citizens of our area interested in looking for in their day-to-day lives?”
Putnam said that the Junior Chamber is just starting to build its roadmap. It involves only high-school students for now, but it may well open up to involve Quincy Valley School students in the future, if a few transportation wrinkles can be resolved.
The Junior Chamber members will be included with the grown-up chamber’s meetings starting in September, when the students return for the school year.
“It’s exciting,” Putnam said.
To join the Junior Chamber, you may contact Putnam at 509-421-6809.

By Sebastian Moraga, For the Post-Register