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Club Spotlight: Giving Back at TAS

With the start of the 2015-2016 school year comes plenty of new clubs to join and opportunities to explore. But don’t worry if you felt overwhelmed at the club fair; it’s not too late to sign up for clubs you might have missed. Check out our take on some of the newest service clubs of this school year and see what their presidents have to say. 
People. Animals. Love.
Nancy Z. (11), started P.A.L. (People. Animals. Love.) after watching a video that completely changed her way of life; an undercover investigation of the inside of a factory farm revealed workers kicking newborn animals, cutting off pig’s tails without anesthesia, and hanging debeaked chickens upside down as if they were toys. Nancy says, “The video terrified me so much, I seriously couldn’t believe my eyes! After watching it I knew I had to change the way I ate.” Nancy gradually became vegan, and started P.A.L this year to encourage the TAS community to face the facts: animal torture will always exist if humans keep consuming animal-based products.
What They Do: P.A.L educates students about the impact they have as consumers and clears up common myths about being vegan such as “being vegan is difficult” or “you will not be able to gain enough muscle.” The club also shares simple and creative ideas on how to reduce consumption of animal products.
Goals of the Club: The goal of this club is not to force students to become vegan, but rather to provide ideas and support the student body. Nancy and her officers hope to make P.A.L a friendly environment where students can freely express their opinions.
Butterfly Effect
Butterfly Effect is one of the only clubs in TAS focused on helping teenagers who suffer from anorexia and other eating disorders. Founded by Jasmine K. (11), it aims to promote healthy minds and bodies within the TAS community. Jasmine says, “Nowadays, having the ideal body is emphasized so much in social media. People don’t realize how these expectations have detrimental effects on teenagers.” Why should TAS students be interested in this club? Butterfly Effect ultimately goes beyond teenagers with eating disorders, and also aims to teach all students within our TAS community to accept themselves as a new way of living life.
What They Do: Butterfly Effect holds fundraisers and donates to the Butterfly Foundation for Eating Disorders.
Goals of the Club: By raising money for the Butterfly Foundation, the club hopes to prevent teenagers from hurting themselves and spread acceptance of everyone.
Girl Up
Have you ever noticed the phrase, “Man up”, used often in TAS? Kavya N. (10) decided to start the club, Girl Up, as a response to this overused, gender-discriminatory language. Girl Up aims to address the issue of gender equality, both locally at TAS and internationally. Kavya says, “Gender inequality exists in all strata of society and is not necessarily noticed. In its extreme forms, gender equality can lead to female infanticide and restrictions on rights. However, gender inequality also applies to women who enter the workforce or plan to attend college, so addressing this issue is critical no matter who you are.”
What They Do:  Based on the larger UN Organization of the same name, the TAS branch of Girl Up seeks to raise funds for UN aid projects in Liberia, Malawi, Guatemala, and more.
Goals of the Club: Girl Up aims to educate and empower girls all around the world, as well as raise awareness on gender equality within the local community.
Age Brighter
Age Brighter, a club focused on improving the living standards of senior citizens, was founded this year by Ashley S. (10). “There are countless senior citizens who are suffering from a lack of medical support and day-to-day treatment,” says Ashley, “But while TAS has a large number of clubs targeting underprivileged children, not many clubs support the older portion of the population.” Because of this, Ashley and the other officers of the club decided they needed to make a change, hoping to impact the elderly society in a positive manner.
What They Do: Age Brighter holds fundraisers and donates to Help Age International, an international organization that supports older people. They also hold fundraisers for smaller projects and plan on visiting retirement homes once or twice a semester.
Goals of the Club: Their long term goal is to raise awareness for those who once shaped our society but don’t receive the attention they deserve. The club hopes to inspire more students in TAS to help out the elderly community.

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