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About Rotary Foundation

Foundation Committee

The Rotary Club of Canterbury is part of a world wide organisation. There are 33,000 Rotary clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world. Clubs are nonpolitical, nonreligious, and open to all cultures, races, and creeds. As signified by the motto Service Above Self, Rotary’s main objective is service — in the community, in the workplace, and throughout the world. The ambitious role 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. The Canterbury Club plays its part through its Foundation Committee. Here are some of the things that we do as part of that huge international effort.

Ambassadorial Scholarships

Rotary Foundation’s Ambassadorial Scholarship programme is the world’s largest privately funded international scholarship scheme. Through grants totaling US$500 million recipients from about 70 countries have studied in more than 70 nations. There are some 800 people each year who take up the opportunity to study at undergraduate, post graduate and professional levels and at the same time develop international understanding whilst acting as ambassadors for their own countries.

With three universities within the city we are involved in hosting scholars from across the world who choose to come to Canterbury. These individuals go on to develop close ties with our members and their families, and with other local Rotary Clubs. In 2009 we hosted scholars from Germany and Nigeria and we are presently exploring how we can play a part in giving a UK scholar an opportunity to participate in this mind expanding scheme.

Group Study Exchange

The Rotary Foundation’s Group Study Exchange programme is a unique cultural and vocational exchange opportunity for business people and professionals between the ages of 25 and 40 who are in the early stages of their careers. The programme provides travel grants for teams to exchange visits in paired areas of different countries. For four to six weeks, team members experience the host country’s culture and institutions, observe how their vocations are practiced abroad, develop personal and professional relationships, and exchange ideas.

We in Canterbury have regularly been involved in both hosting groups from abroad and nominating members for outgoing teams. In 2008 we hosted a group from Brazil and in 2009 a nominee from this Club – Doctor Curie Scott from Canterbury Christ Church University – is part of the team that will go to Brazil.

Matching Grants

Through Matching Grants, The Rotary Foundation matches contributions raised for international service projects by Rotary clubs and districts in two or more countries.

For example, the Canterbury Club learned of a project in Brazil where some US$14,000 was needed to fund a sterilisation unit at a cancer hospital in that country. We worked with a local Rotary Club in the country, with our own District and with Rotary Foundation (which is based in the USA) to raise the funds for this much needed venture. Our ambassadorial scholar at the time was able to see the results of these efforts when she visited Brazil .


In the UK this infectious disease is now rare. But polio is still a crippling and potentially fatal disease which still strikes children mainly under the age of five in countries in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East – it can cause paralysis and sometimes death. There is no cure for polio – the best protection is prevention. For about a pound’s worth of vaccine, a child can be protected against this crippling disease for life. Rotary is internationally seeking to raise US $200 million to match US $355 million in challenge grants received from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

We in Canterbury are playing our small part by raising funds and by being actively involved in traveling abroad to help. For example, in the 2008 – 2009 Rotary raised more than £2,000 towards the programme, and in 2008 then Vice President Richard Kemball-Cook went to India to take part in a programme of vaccination. 

When, in 1917, the President Rotary International, Arch C Klumph, proposed that an endowment be set up “for the purpose of doing good in the world,” it is doubtful whether he could have imagined the scope of what is now being achieved. We in the Rotary Club of Canterbury are keen to play our part in that laudable objective.

“ThisClose” Posters to support the End Polio Now Campaign:  Examples and Instructions.

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The Rotary Club of Canterbury
St Lawrence Cricket Ground
Old Dover Road,
Canterbury, Kent,
CT1 3NZ,
United Kingdom

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