100 Years of Rotary in Australia and New Zealand

Rotary in our region is fast approaching its 100-year anniversary. To celebrate this milestone our four founding clubs: Melbourne, Sydney, Auckland and Wellington – all begun in 1921 – have joined forces to develop a major commemorative centenary project.

The project will take the form of a major public health initiative across nine Pacific Island countries to introduce three new vaccines preventing deadly rotavirus, pneumococcal and cervical cancer. The countries involved are the Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. An estimated 100,000 children and adolescent girls will be reached.

UNICEF has come on board as a partner, providing their experience and expertise. Budgets are still being finalized but Rotary will probably be committing at least USD 2.4 million (AUD 3.2 million) towards the project over 3-4 years as well as being involved in its implementation.

Involvement in the project will be open to Rotarians across the Pacific. “After all this is the centenary of Rotary in Australasia, not just the four founding clubs,” said committee member James Allen. “The project will start now, although the next 6-12 months will be largely planning. The first vaccinations are expected to take place in the second half of 2018.”

To find out how you can get involved contact James Allen, Rotary Club of Sydney on j.allen@stantonchase.com