Who We Are
Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.
What is Rotary?
Rotary is an international membership organization made up of diverse groups of people who share a passion for and commitment to enhancing communities and improving lives across the world. Rotary clubs exist in almost every country. Being a member is an opportunity to take action and make a difference.
How Did We Get Here?
We’ve been making history and bringing our world closer together for more than 100 years. The first Rotary club was started in Chicago, Illinois, in 1905 by an attorney named Paul Harris. Harris wanted to bring together a group of professionals with different backgrounds and skills as a way to exchange ideas and form meaningful acquaintances. In August 1910, there were 16 Rotary clubs in the United States and by 1912 Rotary started to expand internationally. By July 1925, Rotary clubs existed on six continents. Today, there are more than 35,000 clubs, in almost every country in the world.
Although Rotary clubs develop autonomous service programs, all Rotarians worldwide are united in a campaign for the global eradication of polio. Through the PolioPlus program, Rotarians have contributed more than $2.1 billion to date and provided an army of volunteers to promote and assist at national immunization days in polio-endemic countries around the world.
Find out more about Rotary by visiting the Rotary International website.
The Four-Way Test
The Four-Way Test is a nonpartisan and nonsectarian ethical guide for Rotarians to use for their personal and professional relationships. The test has been translated into more than 100 languages, and Rotarians recite it at club meetings:
Of the things we think, say or do
Is it the TRUTH?
Is it FAIR to all concerned?
Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
What We Do
Rotary members believe that we have a shared responsibility to take action on our world’s most persistent issues. Our 35,000+ clubs work together to:
- Promote peace
- Fight disease
- Provide clean water, sanitation, and hygiene
- Save mothers and children
- Support education
- Grow local economies
- Protect the environment
Who Are We?
We are the current and future leaders in our professional organizations and our communities. We see the world as it could be, not as it is. We have big ideas founded on insightful strategic vision. Our passion and influence empower and inspire others to take action to bring about positive change. Always busy, we find the time to roll up our sleeves and lead from the front. We see the glass as half full while carrying a pitcher of water in our hands.
What Makes Us Tick?
We have an innate desire in life to help others and make the world a better place now and for the future. We seek active and meaningful engagement with other leaders with whom we can learn, collaborate, and effect positive change. We thrive on challenge. We expect success and positive results. We are proud that we have made a difference but we are more gratified by knowing we havetaken a strong foundation and made it better.
What Do We Get Out of Rotary?
We aggregate our talents, experience and skills to amplify our ability to make our communities a better place for all. Along with over a million Rotarians worldwide, we are united by a shared set of principles and goals that bridge national, cultural, ethnic, and religious boundaries. We grow personally and professionally through the shared experience of working together. Our lives and those we help are forever changed and enriched in amazing ways.
How Do We Do It?
We aggregate our talents, experience, and skills to amplify our ability to make our communities a better place for all. Along with over a million Rotarians worldwide, we are united by a shared set of principles and goals that bridge national, cultural, ethnic, and religious boundaries. We grow personally and professionally through the shared experience of working together. Our lives and those we help are forever changed and enriched in amazing ways.