What is Rotary?


Rotary International is the world's first service club organization. Its more than 1.2 million members volunteer their time and talent to further the Rotary motto, Service Above Self.

The Object of Rotary The Object of Rotary is to encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise and, in particular, to encourage and foster:

  • FIRST. The development of acquaintance as an opportunity for service;
  • SECOND. 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;
  • THIRD. The application of the ideal of service in each Rotarian's personal, business, and community life;
  • FOURTH. The advancement of international understanding, goodwill, and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional persons united in the ideal of service. Avenues of Service Based on the Object of Rotary, the Avenues of Service are Rotary's philosophical cornerstone and the foundation on which club activity is based: bullet 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 The test, which has been translated into more than 100 languages, asks the following questions: 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?"

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. Diversity and Rotary Rotary International recognizes the value of diversity within individual clubs. Rotary encourages clubs to assess those in their communities who are eligible for membership, under existing membership guidelines, and to endeavor to include the appropriate range of individuals in their clubs. A club that reflects its community with regard to professional and business classification, gender, age, religion, and ethnicity is a club with the key to its future. Moving toward the future In 2001-02, Rotary International began developing a strategic plan to guide the organization as it entered its second century of service. In June 2007, the Board of Directors approved the RI Strategic Plan 2007-10, which identifies seven priorities: bullet Eradicate polio. bullet Advance the internal and external recognition and public image of Rotary. bullet Increase Rotary's capacity to provide service to others. bullet Expand membership globally in both numbers and quality. bullet Emphasize Rotary's unique vocational service commitment. bullet Optimize the use and development of leadership talents within RI. bullet Fully implement the strategic planning process to ensure continuity and consistency throughout the organization.