What would it take to change the world?
Rotary’s 1.2 million members believe it starts with a commitment to “Service Above Self”. In more than 34,000 clubs worldwide, members volunteer to support education and job training, provide clean water, combat hunger, improve health and sanitation, and eradicate polio.
The world’s first service club, the Rotary Club of Chicago, was formed on 23 February 1905 by Paul P. Harris, an attorney. The Rotary name is derived from the early practice of rotating meetings among members’ offices.
By 1921, Rotary clubs had been formed on six continents. As Rotary International, as it was now called grew, its mission expanded beyond serving club members’ professional and social interests. Rotarians began pooling their resources and contributing their talents to help serve communities in need.
- through the development of acquaintance as the opportunity for service;
- the promotion of high ethical standards in business and professions;
- through service in one’s personal, business and community life; and
- the advancement of international understanding, good-will and peace.