Rotary District Foundation Chair, Marion Stark gave a presentation on the Rotary Foundation at our regular meeting on Wednesday, March 13th.
She began with a summary of the networking and ethical business standards set by the founders of Rotary, and of the origin of The Rotary Foundation.
 A decade after the founding of Rotary, the organization turned from self-serving interests and began accepting endowments for the purpose of doing good in the world in charitable, educational, and other avenues of community service. Accomplishments were modest until donations to the Foundation started pouring in immediately following the 1947 death of Rotary founder Paul Harris.
Today, The Rotary Foundation is the charitable arm of Rotary that helps fund Rotary’s humanitarian activities, from local service projects to global initiatives. The Foundation also takes the lead on worldwide Rotary campaigns such as eradicating polio and promoting peace throughout the world. Due to the hard work and generosity of Rotarians worldwide, The Rotary Foundation has improved the lives of millions of people for over 100 years.
The Rotary Foundation also offers district and global grants that any Rotary club or district can apply for to support a wide variety of projects, scholarships, and training.
Global Grants fund large international humanitarian projects, vocational training teams, and scholarships that have sustainable, measurable outcomes in one or more of Rotary International’s six Areas of Focus. Project fundind requests must be for a minimum of $30,000. A key feature of global grants is partnership - grants are sponsored by at least one Rotary club or district in the country where the project will take place, and one or more outside that country.
District Grants are block grants that allow clubs and districts to address immediate needs, generally small-scale, short-term projects, in their communities and abroad. Each district chooses which activities it will fund with these grants.
Marion gave several examples of District 7255 projects supported by Rotary global grants. She explained how project funding can be magnified through district and Rotary International matching, emphasizing the wide ranging economic and social impact of Rotary projects in depressed communities throughout the world.
Marion concluded by describing the Rotary Peace Scholarships, fully funded academic fellowships to pursue a Masters Degree Program or Professional Development Certificate, related to peace and conflict resolution and prevention, at one of five peace centers around the world.
Marion is shown above with Babylon Rotary Co-Presidents Charlie Spencer and Scott Lockwood.