Rotary's Motto & Areas of Focus

Service and Fellowship

The Rotary motto ‘Service Above Self’  conveys the humanitarian spirit of Rotary’s 1.2+ million members. Strong fellowship among Rotarians along with meaningful community and international service projects characterise Rotary worldwide.

Rotary’s Areas of Focus

Rotary clubs serve communities around the world,  recognising that each community has its own unique concerns and needs.  The most successful and sustainable Rotary service tends to fall within one of the following six areas:

AoF-Peace_Smoke-RGBPromoting peace – Today, 42 million people are displaced by armed conflict or persecution. Through our partnerships with several leading universities, Rotary Peace Fellows develop the skills to strengthen peace efforts, train local leaders to prevent and mediate conflict, and support long-term peace building in areas affected by conflict. We provide up to 100 peace fellowships per year at Rotary Peace Centers.


AoF-Disease_Smoke-RGBFighting disease – More than 100 million people are pushed into poverty each year because of medical costs. We aim to improve and expand access to low-cost and free health care in underdeveloped areas. Our members educate and mobilize communities to help prevent the spread of major diseases such as polio, HIV/AIDS, and malaria. Many of our projects ensure that medical training facilities are located where the workforce lives.


AoF-Water_Smoke-RGBProviding clean water – More than 2.5 billion people lack access to adequate sanitation facilities. At least 3,000 children die each day from diarrheal diseases caused by unsafe water. Our projects give communities the ability to develop and maintain sustainable water and sanitation systems and support studies related to water and sanitation.


AoF-Maternal_Smoke-RGBSaving mothers and children – At least 7 million children under the age of five die each year due to malnutrition, poor health care, and inadequate sanitation. To help reduce this rate, we provide immunizations and antibiotics to babies, improve access to essential medical services, and support trained health care providers for mothers and their children. Our projects ensure sustainability by empowering the local community to take ownership of health care training programs.


AoF-Literacy_Smoke-RGBSupporting education – Sixty-seven million children worldwide have no access to education and more than 775 million people over the age of 15 are illiterate. Our goal is to strengthen the capacity of communities to support basic education and literacy, reduce gender disparity in education, and increase adult literacy.


AoF-Economic_Smoke-RGBGrowing local economies – Nearly 1.4 billion employed people live on less than $1.25 a day. We carry out service projects that enhance economic and community development and develop opportunities for decent and productive work for young and old. We also help strengthen local entrepreneurs and community leaders, particularly women, in impoverished communities.


Rotary International and The Rotary Foundation recognise these six areas of focus as organisational priorities, and there are countless ways that Rotarians can address these needs locally and internationally.  View Waikato Sunrise’s Fundraising and Programmes to learn more about how Waikato Sunrise is making a difference.