About Rotary International

Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who come together to make positive, lasting change in communities at home and abroad.

Rotary is committed to service, dream big and set bold goals.

There are 35,000+ Rotary clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas. Clubs are nonpolitical, nonreligious, and open to all cultures, races, and creeds. As signified by the motto Service Above Self, the mission

Rotary motto: Service Above Self

The mission of Rotary International, a worldwide association of Rotary clubs, is to provide service to others, to promote high ethical standards, and to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through its fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders.

Rotary Guiding Principles

Ojective Of Rotary

First formulated in 1910 and adapted throughout the years as Rotary's mission expanded, the Object of Rotary provides a succinct definition of the organization's purpose as well as the individual club member's responsibilities. The Object of Rotary is to encourage and foster the ideal service as a basis of worthy enterprise and, in particular, to encourage and foster:

1. The development of acquaintance as an opportunity for service

2. High ethical standards in business and professions; the recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations; and the dignifying of each Rotarian's occupation as an opportunity to serve society

3. The application of the ideal of service in each Rotarian's personal, business, and community life

4. The advancement of international understanding, goodwill, and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional persons united in the ideal of service.

Rotary members have a shared responsibility to take action on the world’s most persistent issues. 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

Each club should aim to get members with a professional diversity which can be tapped for service projects in various arenas. It also diversifies social atmosphere and broadens horizon amongst the gathering. Club's membership should reflects the social, business and professional composition of its community.

Avenues of services

Based on the Object of Rotary, the four Avenues of Service are Rotary's philosophical cornerstone and the foundation on which club activity is based:

Club Service

Focuses on strengthening fellowship and ensuring the effective functioning of the club.

Vocational Service

Encourages Rotarians to serve others through their vocations and to practice high ethical standards.

Community Service

Covers the projects and activities the club undertakes to improve life in its community.

International Service

Encompasses actions taken to expand Rotary's humanitarian reach around the globe and to promote world understanding and peace.

The four-way test

Followed by Rotarians worldwide in their business and professional lives, The Four-Way Test was created by Rotarian Herbert J. Taylor in 1932. It has since been translated into more than 100 languages.

Of the things we think, say or do

1)    Is it the TRUTH?

2)    Is it FAIR to all concerned?

3)    Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?

4)     Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?


Rotary links 1.2 million members to form an organization of international scope. On 23rd February, 1905 Paul Harris, a Chicago attorney formed the Rotary Club of Chicago, which gathered professionals with diverse backgrounds to meet socially, exchange ideas , build friendships, and plan meaningful work in the society to give back to the community. On 23 February 1905, Harris, Gustavus Loehr, Silvester Schiele, and Hiram Shorey gathered at Loehr's office in Room 711 of the Unity Building in downtown Chicago.

This was the first gathering was between a merchant, an engineer and a coal dealer to bring a solution to poor business ethics. This network grew and through it evolved a gathering which could help the community in diverse issues, thus came to be born Club services. Earlier meetings were rotated amongst the offices of these members and hence the word ‘Rotary ‘ was coined.

Today, Rotary remains the world's largest business networking organization but puts "Service Above Self". Much of rotary’s work is service and is done through business networking and volunteer work from members from varied professions. Paul Harris, the Rotary Founder stated ‘Whatever Rotary may mean to us, to the world it will be known by the results it achieves.’

It was Arch Klumph’s idea for an donation dedicated to “doing good in the world” which initiated The Rotary Foundation in 1917 The first donation was 26.5 dollars . Thanks to his vision and the extraordinary generosity of Rotary members the fund has become one of the world’s leading humanitarian foundations. The Rotary Foundation's first gift, made to the International Society for Crippled Children in 1930 was 500$ He said “We should not live for ourselves alone, but for the joy in doing good for others.” Rotary foundation helps to fund various service activities. It receives donation worldwide.

Rotary became truly global soon after being founded. Only 16 years after being founded, Rotary had clubs on six continents. Today, members in nearly every country work to contribute in terms of time, service and funds towards some of the worlds most important problems, polio eradication being one of them

Structure of Rotary

Rotary is made up of 3 sections

1. Rotary clubs

Rotary clubs unite dedicated people to exchange ideas, build relationships, and take action.

2. Rotary International

Rotary International supports Rotary clubs worldwide by coordinating global programs and initiatives.

3. The Rotary Foundation

The Rotary Foundation helps fund our humanitarian activities, from local service projects to global initiatives. The Rotary Foundation of RI is a non-for-profit corporation whose mission is to support the efforts of Rotary International in the fulfillment of the Object of Rotary, Rotary's mission, and the achievement of world understanding and peace through local, national, and international humanitarian, educational, and cultural programs.

Rotary is essentially a grassroots organization, with most of its service efforts being carried out at a club level. The district and international structure is designed to support the clubs and help them provide more service in their communities and abroad.


Rotarians are members of Rotary clubs which has its directors and board. They function autonomously within the rotary framework as per the constitution and bylaws. All rotary clubs belong to the rotary international.


Under one district many clubs come together of that locality. The district is headed by the District Governor assisted by various committees and Assistant Governors.


The RI president heads the board of directors. He develops a theme for the year which the clubs follow. The boards of directors meet periodically


The RI General Secretary is the person managing this office. Rotary International is headquartered in the Chicago suburb of Evanston, Illinois, USA.

interact club

Take action, build international understanding, and make new friends around the world.

Interact clubs aims to make young leaders with a sense of service within them It provides opportunity to bring together young people ages 12-18 for this purpose.

There are 20,372 Interact clubs, 468,556 Interactors, 159 Countries with interact clubs

For more information: https://www.rotary.org/en/get-involved/interact-clubs


Rotary clubs organize and sponsor this leadership, professional development, and service organization for young adults, ages 18-30. They exchange of ideas with leaders in the community, develop leadership and professional skills, service and fellowship.

Rotary supports and guides the rotaract in their projects and work hand in hand with their projects. However Rotaract clubs decide how to organize and run their club, manage their own funds, and plan and carry out activities and service projects aligned with causes that are important to rotary.

There are 9,522 Rotaract club, 291,006 Rotractors and 177 countries with rotaract clubs.

For more information:  https://www.rotary.org/en/get-involved/rotaract-clubs

RI recommends that clubs planning service activities consider nine major needs or concerns:

• Children at Risk,

• Disabled Persons,

• Health Care,

• International Understanding and Goodwill,

• Literacy and Numeracy,

• Population Issues,

• Poverty and Hunger,

• Preserve Planet Earth,

• Urban Concerns.

Responsibilities of club membership

The club is the cornerstone of Rotary, where the most meaningful work is carried out. All effective Rotary clubs exhibit four key characteristics: they sustain or increase their membership base, participate in service projects that benefit their own community and those in other countries, support The Rotary Foundation of RI financially and through program participation, and develop leaders capable of serving in Rotary beyond the club level.