It’s a common misconception that only half of our annual giving to the Rotary Foundation comes back to the District for grants.  In fact, with a strategic approach, more than 100 percent can be returned to support humanitarian projects in our district.

The term “SHARE” has a couple of different meanings in the context of Rotary Foundation giving.  In the simplest terms, it is how we share Rotary with the world and our giving with other districts.  The term “SHARE” also is applied to a category of Annual Fund giving (promoted as Every Rotarian Every Year) that is unrestricted.  When you give to the Rotary Foundation Annual Fund, you have the choice of restricting your gift to a specific area of focus, such as water/sanitation or basic education/literacy.  But if you make this election, you need to be aware that those gifts will not be included in our District Designated Funds (DDF).  DDF is the money that comes back to our district three years later and provides the funds we use for District Grants as well as the District’s match for Global Grants.

For this reason, district leaders encourage Rotarians to select Annual Fund – SHARE as the best choice for Annual Fund giving when our members donate to the Rotary Foundation.

A portion of our members’ Annual Fund – SHARE giving that is made in fiscal year 2018 will be returned to the District as DDF that we can utilize in fiscal year 2021.  To be more precise, one-half of our district’s total giving to Annual Fund – SHARE is returned as DDF. If our district Rotarians gave, for example, $300,000 to the Annual Fund – SHARE this year, we would receive $150,000 back in DDF three years later.  

The other half - $150,000 in this example - comes back to us from the World Fund, which is administered by the Rotary Foundation and provides a signification portion of the funding of our Global Grants.

This is where the misconception originates, and if we only utilized DDF (and not the World Fund) to support our humanitarian projects, it would be a valid assumption.  But, we certainly don’t need to stop there. Although it has been customary for our district Rotarians to participate in Global Grants as the international partner, we also can choose to be the host partner.  The host partner is on the receiving end of a humanitarian project funded by a Global Grant.

It is no secret that our Rotary District includes many communities with significant economic and social needs.  We can utilize the funds available from Rotary Foundation Global Grants by forming partnerships with other Rotary Clubs in districts outside our own country and tapping into the World Fund.

And that’s how we SHARE and receive more at the same time!