Rotary International is a volunteer organization of business and  professional leaders who provide humanitarian service and help to build goodwill and peace in the world. There are approximately 1.2 million  Rotary club members belonging to 33,000 Rotary clubs in more than 200  countries and geographical areas.  Founded in Chicago in 1905, Rotary  celebrated 100 years of service in 2005. The Rotary Foundation has  awarded more than US$2.1 billion in grants, which are administered at  the local level by Rotary clubs.


What is the purpose of Rotary?

Rotary clubs exist to improve communities through a range of humanitarian, intercultural and educational activities.  Clubs advance international understanding by partnering with clubs in  other countries. Rotary also encourages high ethical standards in all  vocations.


What do local Rotary clubs do?

Rotary clubs address critical issues at home and abroad by providing  health care and medical supplies, clean water, food, job training, youth development, and education to millions of people in need.  Examples of  Rotary’s focus areas include:


Polio Eradication - In 1985, Rotary International  created PolioPlus a program to immunize all the world’s  children against polio. To date, Rotary has contributed US$800 million  and countless volunteer hours to the protection of more than two billion children in 122 countries. Rotary is currently working to raise an  additional US$200 million toward a US$355 million challenge grant from  the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. These efforts are providing  much needed polio vaccine, operational support, medical personnel,  laboratory equipment and educational materials for health workers and  parents. In addition, Rotary has played a major role in decisions by  donor governments to contribute over $4 billion to the effort. With its  community-based network worldwide, Rotary is the volunteer arm of the  global partnership dedicated to eradicating polio. Rotary volunteers  assist in vaccine delivery, social mobilization and logistical help in  cooperation with the national health ministries, the World Health  Organization (WHO), UNICEF, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Peace - In an effort to educate tomorrow’s  peacemakers and ambassadors, up to 110 Rotary World Peace Fellows  are sponsored each year to study at one of the eight universities for  International Studies in peace and conflict resolution. Since 2002, 339 fellows from over 75 countries have participated at a cost of more than $23 million.


International Education - Rotary is the world’s  largest privately-funded source of international scholarships. Each  year, about 1,000 university students receive Rotary scholarships to study abroad. Rotary clubs also coordinate a high school-age student exchange program that has sent nearly 8,000 students abroad for three  months to a year.


Humanitarian Projects - Rotary clubs initiate  thousands of humanitarian service projects every year.  These volunteer-driven projects address the root causes of conflict, such as  hunger, poverty, disease and illiteracy.


Literacy - Rotary clubs work to improve literacy  rates worldwide. A unique, Rotary-pioneered approach called  the Concentrated Language Encounter (CLE) has proven very effective in  resource-strapped developing countries. It was so successful in  Thailand, that the Thai government adopted the program nationwide.


Water Management - Recognizing the importance of  clean water, many Rotary clubs help to install wells and develop water  treatment and distribution systems to increase access to fresh drinking  water for communities in need, especially in developing countries.

I am interested in learning more about joining Rotary.

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03 October, 2019


Why Should I be a Rotarian?

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Eastern Kentucky

District 6740