More Than 105 Years of Making Good Things Happen!
• Of the 34,000 Rotary Clubs in the world, the Rotary Club of Philadelphia was the 19th to be chartered. That Rotary network of clubs today includes 1.2 million members in more than 200 countries. The Rotary Club of Philadelphia’s more than 100 years of excellence in volunteerism and caring as well as funding community projects continues to generate meaningful initiatives for those in need.
• The Rotary Club of Philadelphia distributions of more than 20,000 thesauruses, dictionaries, atlases and library books just in the past eight years have touched the lives of many thousands of Philadelphia school children at more than 25 city schools.
• The Rotary Club of Philadelphia sponsors the Philadelphia Rotaract Club at the University of Pennsylvania and the Drexel University Rotaract Club (Ages 18-30). Both clubs are composed mostly of university students who engage in community service outreach.
• The West Catholic Prep Interact Club is a high school partner organization sponsored by the Rotary Club of Philadelphia. This club completed six service activities this past year and received recognition from Rotary International. The Philadelphia Rotary also been sending students from West Catholic Prep to the weekend long Rotary Leadership Training (RYLA) in each of the past three years.
• The Philadelphia Rotary is in the process of establishing an Early Act “community service” Club for elementary age children at La Salle Academy in Lower Kensington.
• The Rotary Club of Philadelphia has its own foundation and annually awards more than $30,000.00 of grants for deserving humanitarian projects.
• The Philadelphia Rotary has recently been a “three year” financial partner in a project to improve maternal health care in Uganda. This initiative linked medical professionals from Drexel University and Makere University in Uganda.
• In the past three years, Philadelphia Rotary has also financed seven Rotaplast surgical operations for children with cleft palates. And the Philadelphia Rotary purchased five Shelter Boxes to provide a temporary living environment for families in a natural disaster area.
• At the local level, the Philadelphia Rotary has financially supported outreach programs for the homeless, an immigrant literacy education program, restoration of school music programs in public schools, community workforce development, improved education for struggling readers in schools, and a program for babies under intensive medical care at Children’s Hospital.
• The Rotary Club of Philadelphia has successfully sponsored four Rotary International Peace Fellowship winners from Philadelphia---two Philadelphia police lieutenants and two Philadelphia assistant district attorneys---who have studied violence prevention, peace building, mediation and compromise for three months at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok.
The Philadelphia Rotary has been a very strong financial supporter of Rotary International’s dynamic and highly successful campaign to eliminate polio worldwide. Even more significantly, its members over the years have consistently distinguished themselves with a wide array of volunteer “hands on” efforts locally. Philadelphia Rotarians are involved each year with local community service projects each year, ranging from painting inner city interior school walls to playground and park clean-ups to answering phones and other volunteer activities for non-profits in need.
• One of the Philadelphia Rotary’s unique affiliations of the past was its “twin relationship” with the Rotary Club of Nottingham (UK) which began in 1921. For many years, these two clubs created friendship activities which allowed members to periodically visit with each other back and forth across the Atlantic. Skype conferences between these two Rotary clubs have been used periodically to rekindle that “twin relationship.”
Members of the Rotary Club of Philadelphia continue to enjoy great fellowship with each other at two scheduled Thursday luncheon meetings each month at the Union League in center city Philadelphia. The Philadelphia Rotarians can also meet with their affiliated “Happy Hour” club one evening each month.
• The Rotary Club of Philadelphia has been the home to two Rotary International Presidents – Glenn Mead (1912-13) and Guy Gundaker (1923-24). Current member Lynmar Brock has served as a past Director of Rotary International. Many of the Rotary clubs in the Greater Philadelphia area can trace their roots back to the Rotary Club of Philadelphia as their “mother” club.
Internationally, Rotary’s efforts also promote health and literacy, reduce poverty and hunger, fight pollution, assist in disaster situations, and attempt to build peace and goodwill internationally. The many positive global impacts of Rotary have been and continue to be staggering.