What is Rotary?

Keynsham Rotary Club is part of Rotary International; but what exactly is Rotary? This page defines what Rotary is and what it does. Rotary Club of Keynsham raises funds for Charity. Rotary club of Keynsham supports the Keynsham community.


Rotary International

What is Rotary?


Rotary International, as it is known, is a world wide organisation with over 1 million members and 30,000 separate clubs. It is a network of local clubs with membership of business, professional and community volunteers. These clubs welcome Male and female members (Rotarians) who gather weekly at breakfast, lunch or dinner (evening) meetings to work together to uphold the principle "Service above Self". Membership strives to reflect "Diversity" in respect of gender, age, ethnicity and profession and is encouraged to attend club meetings other than their own; nationally and internationally. 

The organisation operates at grassroots level through local Rotary clubs across the UK and across the world. Each club elects its own officials and has considerable autonomy; delivering service within the bounds of Rotary International"s constitution and bylaws. 

How does this work? There are various ways in which Rotarians deliver service: 

Club Service; by having fun, building lasting friendships and involvement in ensuring their local club is well run. 

Vocational Service; volunteering professional skills to serve others and promoting integrity in everything they do. 

Community Service; addressing local needs and working with the community to bring lasting improvements. 

International Service; helping meet humanitarian needs around the world whilst helping promote world understanding and peace. 

New Generations Service; working with young people to help them become the next generation of leaders, visionaries and peacemakers. 

The structure of Rotary starts with individual clubs which are grouped into districts led by district governors. These districts are formed within a Rotary Zone which combine to form Rotary International with an annually elected  president and a board of 19 directors elected bi annually. Rotary International   Headquarters are located in Evanston, Illinois, USA. 

Rotary International focuses its activity in six priority areas: 

Peace and prevention/resolution of conflict 

Disease prevention and treatment 

Water and sanitation 

Maternal and child health 

Basic education and literacy 

Economic and community development


Charitable work is undertaken through Rotary International's own Charity called Rotary Foundation. The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty. It has become one of the foremost non-governmental foundations with the educational support programme being the largest private scholarship endowment in the world.


For more information about Rotary Foundation please click below: