Rotary is Humanity in Motion.
Rotary exists, and Rotarians join together throughout the world, to build goodwill, world understanding and international peace. We work to erase major contributors to poverty, including lack of clean water and sanitation, inadequate education, needed vocational training and other opportunities for people to become self-sufficient. So Rotarians in nearly 200 countries/areas collaborate to do projects, funded partly locally and partly by district simplified or matching grants.
What is World Community Service?
World Community Service (WCS) is a Program of The Rotary Foundation designed to encourage Rotary Clubs and Districts from two different countries to form partnerships to implement community service projects. The Host Club is the Club is close to, and normally develops and “advertises” the project. The International Partner is the Rotary Club who “signs up” to provide funding, technical or other assistance, remotely or in-person, for the project. There are several ways that the International Partner can provide support for a specific project – the most common ways used by the Seaside Rotary Club include:
- Direct Support – the International Partner can send funds directly to the Host Club and/or arrange for members to travel to the Host Club Project site to provide in-person support
- District Simplified Grant – the International Partner applies for a DSG, sends it to their District Grants committee for review and approval. Our District (5100) will usually add to our Club’s funds with up to $2000 in 1-to-1 match – each year per Club. Thus the Club’s $2000 contribution gets a match from the District of $2000, providing $4000 for the project. The funds are available quickly, and a “host partner” is not required.
- Matching Grant – either Host or International Partner can prepare a MG Application form. There are two levels of match, if approved: our District 5100 will usually match club money 1-to-1; and The Rotary Foundation (TRF) will match both club and district money. The District funds are called “DDF” (District Designated Funds). Both Host and International Partner Clubs can request District matches – and all qualify for the final TRF match. The TRF matches $.50 per $1.00 of Club donations and $1.00 per $1.00 of District DDF funding. Thus our Club as an International Partner could contribute $2000 to a specific project, get a $2000 match from the District DDF and $3000 from The Rotary Foundation for a grand total of $7000 for the project.
For both DSG and MG grants, more than one club in District 5100 (or another) can join in the funding – and shared/collaborative funding is encouraged by Rotary. DSG’s are typically small projects ($500 to $10,000) whereas MG’s must be at least $10,000 and are often over $20-30,000.
Years ago our Rotary Club created a standing WCS Committee to develop, manage and execute our WCS projects. Our WCS Committee and other clubs typically find projects on MatchingGrants.org, Project Link or from other clubs we know and work with, here and abroad.
Our WCS Committee has decided to focus on Water and Sanitation projects, although we have also promoted or helped fund projects involving school books/furniture/equipment, sewing machine “shops” and vocational training, mosquito nets, cataracts and various other projects. Around the World, Rotary focuses has six Areas of Focus for humanitarian grants.
An excellent website to learn more about WCS, grants, volunteer opportunities, district funding, and who is involved is the District WCS website, initiated by our own Stewart Martin. We recommend you study it to learn about WCS and humanitarian grants.
The budget for our WCS Committee is established each Fiscal year by the Seaside Rotary Foundation – for the past two years our budget has been $12k per year. Over the past several years we have sponsored projects in Indonesia, India, Africa, and Central America.
Here is a summary of our Projects for 2009 and 2010, with links to photos for several:
- Seaside Rotary Club WCS Project Highlights for 2009
- Seaside Rotary Club WCS Project Highlights for 2010
Our current Seaside Club WCS Chair is Charles Dice, with Committee members Stewart Martin, Hugh Stelson, Alice Wood and Al Peinhardt. If you would like to learn more, join the committee or collaborate with us on an international project, please let us know.