Rotary’s Best Kept Secret

Perhaps one of Rotary’s best kept secrets is Rotary Club Central.

I wish my club had found this earlier. Only last month there was a repeated discussion, at yet another business meeting, about how much money we should send to The Rotary Foundation. Club members had forgotten that this had already been decided about ten months ago when our president produced a budget for this Rotary year and set goals on Foundation giving. However, nobody could remember what was said at our club assembly so the discussion went on and on and on. Some club members even forgot we give to The Rotary Foundation’s annual fund (about $100 per capita recommended) as well as the PolioPlus fund ($1000 per club recommended). This whole discussion was most frustrating to the majority of club members. If only we had a quick way of looking up our Foundation giving goals. Well now we have – it’s called Rotary Club Central.

What is it? It’s simply a new online planning tool that helps all clubs set and track their annual goals and achievements.

Why is it a secret? It must be a secret as 76 clubs within Rotary South East have yet to discover it and start to use this brilliant new planning tool.

Why are clubs using it? Clubs have found a number of benefits, namely;

  1. It’s a one-stop shop providing access to all the club and Rotary data that was previously available from several reports – it shows trends in annual membership, age and gender profiles and Foundation giving history
  2. It eliminates paper, hence it replaces paper forms for membership and Rotary Foundation goals, as well as the Planning Guide for Effective Rotary Clubs
  3. It fosters continuity of leadership and gives incoming club presidents sight of club goals and achievement history – allowing them to adjust their own goals for the year ahead
  4. It enables clubs to track their progress – allowing club presidents to see what progress is being made within clubs and amend goals if needed
  5. It creates transparency and allows all club members to see club goals
  6. It showcases the important work that Rotary clubs do worldwide and provides information about the millions of service projects undertaken by Rotarians.

So how have you used Rotary Club Central? The Rotary Club of Sittingbourne Invicta has recently;

  • reconciled all club member online data –  two former members whose data should have been terminated (as they left several months ago) have now removed from the active members list and two more new members added – it is important that current membership numbers are accurately reflected on 1st July as clubs will be invoiced on the total number for RI subscriptions
  • entered our membership and Foundation goals for 2014-15
  • recorded 12 club service goals for 2014-15 (8 have already been achieved)
  • updated Rotary Club Central to show the incoming club leaders; allowing our incoming president to input goals for 2015-16
  • already set membership and Foundation giving goals for 2015-16 as well as 14 service projects and activities for 2015-16

What if your club’s goals change? No problem, all goals, volunteer hours and club expenditure on Rotary projects can be amended at any time.

Who can use Rotary Club Central? All Rotarians can view the goals and achievements for their club. The current and incoming club president, secretary, treasurer, Foundation chair and membership chair can add and edit the clubs membership data and goals.

How do I get to Rotary Club Central? Go to www.rotary.org/clubcentral. You need a My Rotary account on the Rotary International website to see Rotary Club Central. If you do not have an account, it is easy to register for an account.

Rotary Club Central Workshop – a workshop was held on Saturday 11th April 2015 at Ratton School, Eastbourne. This was organised by AG Chris Brenchley for clubs in the East Sussex area. 16 people from 7 clubs (Eastbourne AM, Heathfield & Waldron, Eastbourne Sovereign, Bexhill, Eastbourne Beachy Head, Eastbourne and Hailsham) attended, and have now gone away to start inputting their club goals for 2015-16.

Now is the time to start entering your membership, service project and Foundation goals for 2015-16.

More workshops can be held if other clubs want to be let in on this secret too.

Richard Joy, Rotary Club of Sittingbourne Invicta

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