Rotary is an organization of leaders from diverse backgrounds, who are united worldwide to provide humanitarian service, encourage integrity in all vocations, and build friendships and peace in the world.
There are well over a million Rotarians across the world, in more that 160 countries. Clubs meet weekly, they’re nonpolitical, nonreligious, and they welcome all cultures, races, and creeds.
The main objective of Rotary is service — in the community, in the workplace, and throughout the world. Clubs service projects address many of today’s most critical issues, such as children at risk, poverty and hunger, the environment, illiteracy, and violence. They also support programs for youth, education, vocational and career development, and international exchanges for students, teachers, and other professionals.
While Rotary clubs all do independent service programs, all Rotarians worldwide are also united in a campaign for the global eradication of polio. In the 1980s, Rotarians raised US$240 million to immunize the children of the world; by 2005, Rotary’s centenary year and the target date for the certification of a polio-free world, the PolioPlus program will have contributed US$500 million to this cause. In addition, Rotary has provided an army of volunteers to promote and assist at national immunization days in polio-endemic countries around the world. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, recognising the effective work of Rotary to eliminate this debilitating disease, has already contributed US$ 355 million to Rotary’s efforts in the cause.
The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International is a not-for-profit corporation that promotes world understanding through international humanitarian service programs and educational and cultural exchanges. It is supported solely by voluntary contributions from Rotarians and others who share its vision of a better world. Since 1947, the Foundation has awarded more than US$ 1.1 billion in humanitarian and educational grants, which are initiated and administered by local Rotary clubs and districts.
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