Rotary Foundation of Rotary International History

The Rotary Foundation of the Rotary International was formed by its 6th president, Arch C. Klumph in the year 1917. He created the Rotary Foundation as an endowment fund in order to build a better world.

It was in the year 1928 that the endowment fund increased from USD 26.50 to USD 5,000. During this time, the corporation got the name "The Rotary Foundation", which in due course of time went on to become an important wing of the Rotary International.

The responsibility of the various stages of operation of the Rotary Foundation including investing, managing and administering its property were offered to Five Trustees, which included Klumph. It was the "International Society for Crippled Children" organization which received the first donation made by the Foundation in the year 1930. Edgar F. "Daddy" Allen was responsible for forming this organization looking after the welfare of physically handicapped children.

The growth of the organization became stagnant due to the effects of Second World War. However, after the war and after the death of the founder of the Rotary International, funds came pouring into the organization. Paul Harris Memorial Fund came into existence with the help of large number of contributions that in turn gave shape to the Foundation.

The "Ambassadorial Scholarships" which was the first Rotary Foundation program, launched in the year 1947. The main mission of the Rotary Foundation, the PolioPlus program took off in 1985. These forums led to the various innovative programs of the foundation.

The support to the Foundation improved by leaps and bounds since its inception with over 1 billion dollars contributions. A majority of these contributions came in the period 2003-04. The Foundation confers the "Paul Harris Fellows" title to people contributing 1,000 dollars to the Foundation. More than one million individuals have been the recipient of the title till date.


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