Rosanne Minne, a member of the Shorewood Kiwanis, started volunteering when she was a child

Rosanne Minne, a member of the Shorewood Kiwanis, started volunteering when she was a child

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

St. Clair Shores woman carries on family legacy through volunteering

Meet Rosanne Minne

By: Alyssa Ochss | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published August 9, 2023


ST. CLAIR SHORES — Rosanne Minne comes from a long line of volunteers, including her grandmother, who volunteered during World War I.

Minne, a member of the Shorewood Kiwanis, started volunteering when she was a child. Her mother volunteered for the Polish National Alliance and Minne picked volunteering up from her.

“We volunteered for a lot of the picnics, and she made food, and I helped clean up and things like that,” Minne said.

Minne has lived in St. Clair Shores all her life and raised her children in the Shores as well. She has been married for 51 years.

She said volunteering is something that’s been on her mother’s side for years. Her grandmother was even a nurse’s aide during World War I.

One thing her mother instilled in her is having fun.

“Well, it’s being part of a group and enjoying and being amongst other people and having fun,” Minne said.

Her children and grandchildren do volunteer work, extending the family’s line of volunteers further.

“They think it’s fun,” Minne said. “They love doing it.”

She said her daughters who live out of state help when they’re able to and her youngest daughter is a member of Shorewood Kiwanis.

“She’s very involved in it and she likes it, too,” Minne said.

Minne said she joined the Shorewood Kiwanis around 2014 or 2015 when she retired. She joined as a member.

“It (Shorewood Kiwanis) was very nice and it’s all about children and helping them, and I like that,” Minne said.

Shorewood Kiwanis is a volunteer organization. Its motto is “serving the children of the world,” according to its website. It is located in the Nonprofit Center at Pare in St. Clair Shores.

Before she retired, she worked for the city as the rehab coordinator. She said she was a housing inspector, taking care of the homeowner rehab program as well as working with rentals and tax foreclosure home projects. 

She said the most rewarding thing about volunteering is the feeling of giving and the enjoyment a person gets from what you give them.

Minne is the chairperson of the Shorewood Kiwanis Harper Charity Cruise Committee, and she calls the cruise her “baby.” When she worked for the city, some of the employees would volunteer to sell T-shirts on the day of the cruise.

The Shorewood Kiwanis does receive gratitude and thanks from people they’ve helped over the years. Minne said these thank yous can be verbal or handwritten. They’ve even received a few phone calls. She said it’s nice to hear.

“You know you get involved with people, and it really puts a mark in their lives,” Minne said.

Though she couldn’t really recall any specific moments, Minne said there are stories that still warm her heart and bring tears to her eyes.

“There’s always so many of them,” Minne said about the stories.

One of her favorite programs is the dictionary program. The Shorewood Kiwanis gives dictionaries out to every third grader in St. Clair Shores and the books have so much more than just definitions, she said.

“We talk about the presidents; they have multiplication tables in it, they talk about the planets,” Minne said. “It’s almost like a little encyclopedia.”

People would ask Minne why the students would want a dictionary.

“Well, it’s just like being an engineer. You can’t Google it. You have to know how to find things,” Minne said. “It’s a great tool for teaching and the kids love it.”

Along with volunteering, Minne vacations in their cottage Up North where she said the family recently celebrated two of her grandsons’ birthdays. She also golfs, hangs out with her friend and visits Ohio where one of her daughters lives. 

Minne said she encourages people to volunteer. The volunteer organization an individual joins depends on what their interests are. Google is a great place to search for a volunteer organization.

“Your hearts will be full because you’re doing good things for other people,” Minne said. “And it’s not just about yourself. It’s something you do for other people, and the feedback you get is very rewarding.”