About The Rotary Foundation
The Rotary Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation that supports the efforts of Rotary International to achieve world understanding and peace through international humanitarian, educational, and cultural exchange programs. It is supported solely by voluntary contributions from Rotarians and friends of the Foundation who share its vision of a better world.
The Foundation was created in 1917 by Rotary International's sixth President, Arch C. Klumph, as an endowment fund for Rotary "to do good in the world." It has grown from an initial contribution of US$26.50 to more than US$106 million contributed in 2003-04. Its event-filled history is a story of Rotarians learning the value of service to humanity.
The Foundation's Humanitarian Programs fund international Rotary Club and District projects to improve the quality of life, providing health care, clean water, food, education, and other essential needs primarily in the developing world. One of the major Humanitarian Programs is PolioPlus, which seeks to eradicate the polio virus worldwide. Through its Educational
Programs, the Foundation provides funding for some 1,200 students to study abroad each year. Grants are also awarded to university teachers to teach in developing countries and for exchanges of business and professional people. Former participants in the Foundation's programs have the opportunity to continue their affiliation with Rotary as Foundation Alumni.
Do we really appreciate the value of The Rotary Foundation?
November is Rotary Foundation month and while a lot of emphasis is always placed on how much money we contribute, maybe it’s time we reflected on just what our Foundation does, and how much value and support it brings to the world. It will always be a money business because the programs of The Foundation will always run in parallel with the contributions it receives. Money in equals money out, and it will always be that way. The Foundation cannot spend more than it receives.
In total, The Foundation receives in excess of $100 million per year and spends roughly the same amount in supporting its programs. The difference between income and expenditure is usually The Permanent Fund where contributions are held in trust for the future and never spent. These are the programs that make The Rotary Foundation an exceptional organisation:
Polio eradication. Since the PolioPlus program’s inception in 1985, more than two billion children have received oral vaccine. To date, 210 countries, territories, and areas around the world are polio free, and 134 of these have been certified. As of June 2008, Rotary has committed more than $700 million to global polio eradication. 2006-07 expenditures (latest official figures): $23.7 million.
Health, Hunger and Humanity (3-H) Grants fund large scale, two to four year projects that enhance health, help alleviate hunger, or improve human development. Since 1978, 305 projects in 77 countries have been funded at a cost of $74 million. In 2006-07, 18 new projects were approved and program awards were $4.2 million.
Matching Grants provide matching funds for international service projects of Rotary clubs and districts. Since 1965, over 27,000 Matching Grant projects in 171 countries have been funded at a cost of more than $300 million. In 2006-07, 2,008 new grants were approved for projects in 124 countries. Program awards were $5.1 million.
District Simplified Grants support the short-term service activities or humanitarian endeavours of districts in communities locally or internationally. This program began in 2003-04, and over 1,500 grants have been awarded to 473 districts in 64 countries totalling more than $21 million. In 2006-07, 379 grants were approved and program expenditures were $5.1 million.
Volunteer Service Grants support the international travel of qualified Rotarians to provide a needed service to a community or to plan the implementation of a needed project. This program began in 2006-07, and 202 grants were awarded to support travel to 47 countries. Program awards were $1 million.
Rotary World Peace Fellowships. Each year up to 60 fellows are sponsored to study at one of the six Rotary Centres for International Studies in peace and conflict resolution for a master’s-level degree. Since the program’s inception in 2002-03, more than 300 fellows from over 50 different countries have participated at a cost of more than $18 million. In 2006-07, 50 peace fellows from 27 countries began studies at the six Rotary Centres totalling $4.3 million for the two-year program.
Ambassadorial Scholarships. The Foundation sponsors one of the largest international scholarship programs in the world. Scholars study in a country other than their own where they serve as unofficial ambassadors of goodwill. Since 1947, more than 38,000 scholars from over 100 countries have received scholarships at a cost of more than $490 million. In 2006-07, 822 scholars from 50 countries studied in 80 countries. Program awards were $13.9 million.
Rotary Grants for University Teachers are awarded to faculty members to teach in a developing country for 3 to 10 months. Since 1985, 460 university teachers have shared their expertise with a college or university in a developing country at a cost of $4.5 million. In 2006-07, 29 university teachers from 9 countries taught in 22 countries and program awards were $430,000.
Group Study Exchange (GSE). These annual awards are made to paired Rotary districts to provide travel expense for a team of non-Rotarians a variety of professions. Rotarian hosts organise a four to six week itinerary of vocational, educational, and cultural points of interest. Since 1965, about 60,000 individuals (about 12,500 teams) from 100 countries have participated at a cost of more than $96 million. In 2006-07, 558 teams travelled abroad and program awards were $4.3 million.
If the mission of the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty, what Rotarian wouldn’t want to support his or her own Foundation?
The Rotary Foundation Chairman
PDG Bruce Allen
(H) 9683 6304 (F) 9683 6304 (M) 0412 965 845