Rotary Foundation

The Rotary Foundation is Rotary’s own and only charity
and celebrated its centennial anniversary in 2016/2017.

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The Rotary Foundation is an endowment fund dedicated to Doing Good In The World, and over the past 100 years has spent over $3 billion on humanitarian programmes across the world. This includes spearheading the movement to eradicate polio across the world, as well as facilitating projects which address Rotarys Six Areas of Focus: Peace and Conflict Resolution, Disease Prevention and Treatment, Basic Education and Literacy, Water and Sanitation, Maternal and Child Health, and Economic and Community Development.

The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotary members to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty. The Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation supported solely by voluntary contributions from Rotary members and friends of the Foundation who share its vision of creating a better world. This support is essential to make possible projects, funded with Foundation grants, that bring sustainable improvement to communities in need.  

The work of Rotary begins in the community, and every community has its own unique needs and concerns. While Rotary serves in countless ways, it has focused its efforts in the Six Key Areas. These encompass some of the worlds most critical and widespread humanitarian needs, in which Rotary has a proven record of success in addressing them.

Projects within the Six Areas of Focus are funded by a grant system operated between Rotary clubs and The Rotary Foundation. This gives clubs the opportunity to apply for grants for projects which matter to them. Once a project is identified, clubs in Great Britain and Ireland partner with Rotary clubs in the host country to undertake the project. Additionally, clubs have the opportunity to partner with approved agencies to provide specialist input in the Six Areas of Focus.

The Rotary Club of Croydon annually donates £2000 from Club funds to the Foundation. In addition, members have also supported the End Polio Now campaign through holding World's Greatest Meal events and two ascents of the Millennium Dome 02 Arena. We have also supported Shelterbox for many years. (Since 2001 we have donated 24 Shelterboxes. To see where these have been deployed Click Here.)

Details of the Rotary Foundation Goals may be found in the latest Hand Book

A message from Paul A. Netzel, Rotary Foundation Chair, 2017-2018:

Dear colleagues in Rotary service,

Peace touches nearly everything we do in Rotary.

Peace has been at the core of our organization since its earliest days, before World War I. Rotarians added the “advancement of international peace and goodwill” to our guiding principles at the 1921 convention in Edinburgh, Scotland. At our convention in Havana, Cuba, in 1940, we adopted a resolution calling for “freedom, justice, truth, sanctity of the pledged word and respect for human rights” — principles that became the framework for the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. 

Rotarians were in London when the seeds were sown for what became UNESCO after WWII. And in 1945, Rotarians participated in the conference in San Francisco, California, USA, when the UN charter was written, perhaps one of the most important meetings of the 20th century.

Our Rotary Foundation today works through our six areas of focus to serve as a catalyst for realizing a dream of a more peaceful world. Promoting peace is itself one of these areas, and our thriving Rotary Peace Centres, which annually train up to 100 of the next generation of peacemakers, are a testament to this commitment. Throughout the world, Rotary Peacebuilder Districts donate either $25,000 in Districted Designated Funds each year or $50,000 every other year to support the Rotary Peace Centres.

Through our other areas of focus, too, we work toward peace. By fighting diseases like polio, we are leading the way to a future with healthier, more stable communities. Providing clean water, sanitation, and hygiene promotes peace by reducing water disputes and enhancing a community’s food security. 

Our Foundation’s grants support mobile health clinics, breastfeeding programs, and other projects that help mothers and children. In doing so they build stability in families, ultimately fostering a more peaceful society.

Supporting education fosters peace and civility by expanding intellectual capacity, opening minds, and exposing students to alternatives to violence. Enterprise thrives in peaceful communities, which is why Rotarians apply their expertise to grow local economies by organizing microloans and entrepreneurship, among other initiatives. 

In these and countless other ways, we lead toward peace, partnering with fellow Rotarians and others from around the globe to develop meaningful, sustainable projects that will have a significant impact for our communities.  

As you go about your Rotary work and plan your projects, take pride in the fact that, as Rotarians, we are all ambassadors of peace and understanding. 

Thank you all for your amazing dedication!

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