About Sydney Rotary

The premier Rotary Club in New South Wales

Chartered 21 May 1921


The Rotary Club of Sydney is a very busy multi-dimensional club. Members and visitors have the opportunity to attend a range of activities including luncheons, breakfasts or informal meetups. There are also networking evenings and a variety of committee meetings held at different times of day and night. Guests are always welcome.


The Rotary Club of Sydney is a part of Rotary International  a secular global network of business, professional and community leaders who volunteer their time and talents to make a difference on a local, national and international level. Rotary International’s motto is Service Above Self.



The Rotary Club of Sydney has an outstanding history of Achieving for Others * :
  • Founding the New South Wales Society for Crippled Children in 1929, now known as the Northcott Society; the first Australian Rotary Project.
  • Establishing the Police & Citizens Boys' Clubs in New South Wales.
  • Establishing the Mt Eliza Executive School of Business now part of the University of Melbourne.
  • Instrumental in the building of an International House to accommodate overseas students at the Universities of Sydney and NSW. 

* Brian H Fletcher, Achieving for Others - The Rotary Club of Sydney 1921-2005, Southwood Press 2005. 


Activities and Projects

The Rotary Club of Sydney has an extensive list of current activities and projects.

Members support among many other projects

  • Indigenous Education Scholarships through the Rotary Soukup Scholarship Fund.
  • Vision Beyond Aus (VBA) which provides free eye surgery to the world’s most disadvantaged people.
  • Opportunity Cambodia providing education & training for Cambodia's most vulnerable children.
  • The Rotary Club of Sydney Rural Community Support Programme.

Presidents Projects

Each year the president of The Rotary Club of Sydney spearheads fundraising for a major project or projects.
Projects in recent years include:
  • 2015-16 (President Alex Shaw), partnering with the Poche Centre for Indigenous Health at the University of Sydney is educating and improving the dental health of mainly indigenous children.
  • 2014-15 (Andrew Laurie), The Rotary Take Charge of Your Life Program helping children leaving foster care in partnership with Wesley Mission.
  • 2013-14 (Geoff Wilbow) established The Rotary Life Skills Centre to support the marginalised and homeless in inner city Sydney, to be run by The Salvation Army.
  • 2012-13 (James Allen) started a vaccination programme in Timor-Leste (East Timor) to eliminate a preventable mosquito transmitted, parasitic disease that causes elephantiasis in partnership with University of Sydney.
  • 2011-12 (Ned Boyce), funded the establishment of a state-of-the-art centre and day program for young adults with significant intellectual and physical disabilities run by the Wesley Mission
  • 2010-11(Roslyn McLeod, OAM) provided funds for the internationally acclaimed Children’s Medical Research Institute (CMRI) cancer research team.
  • 2009-10 (John Given) assisted a number of existing charities that were interested in expanding their services into a new area including the Australian Children's Music Foundation, Y-Fin, Lou's Place, The Jewish House and Home Hospice.
  • 2008-09 (Patricia Harrison) provided funds for Youngcare, a charity devoted to providing high level care for young adults, physically incapacitated through accident or illness such as multiple sclerosis, who would otherwise have to live in aged care facilities.
  • 2007-08 (Garry Browne) with a theme of “Education Matters” supported the Inspire Foundation’s Beanbag program to help those with mental illness reconnect with society through different forms of IT; and provided scholarships at the University of New South Wales.
  • 2006-07 (Gerry Rihs) supported an innovative, early-childhood educational enrichment program offered at La Perouse PublicSchool, teaching parents of three- to five-year-olds how to develop their childen’s school readiness, communication abilities, and relationship skills before they begin their education in the classroom; as well as financing a micro-credit bank in a very poor region of the northern Philippines to lift some 15,000 working poor up the economic ladder.
  • 2005-06 (Adrian Pilton) provided a new Ambulance for NETS which is a clinical component of the PSN (Pregnancy and Newborn Services Network) of NSW.
  • 2004-05 (Bruce Edwards) and 2003-04 (Chris Ferris) helped the Salvation Army construct a new building to house the Careline service taking calls from around Australia; a member was the architect. They also ran a two year project to support Wesley’s EQUIP Youth Mentoring Program helping young people, by one to one mentoring, to learn skills for employment and personal development.


Service Committes

The four service committees of the club each provide their own activities and service projects:
  • The Youth Committee
  • The International Services Committee
  • The Service and Awards Committee
  • The Peace Building Group
Club committees run the NSW Police Office of the Year Awards; conduct the annual ANZAC Day BBQ at Hyde Park to feed marchers, service providers and spectators; and is an administrator and participant in the
MS MegaSwim in aid of multiple sclerosis sufferers.
Thinking of joining the Rotary Club of Sydney? 
Ethics is a hallmark of Rotary
Rotarians experience personal growth in an organisation that is respected worldwide for its high values and standards and at the same time develops business networking opportunities and builds lifelong friendships. Clubs are non-political, non-religious, and open to all cultures, races and creeds.
Rotarians abide by The Four-Way Test. 
  • Of the things we think, say or do:
  • Is it the TRUTH? 
  • Is it FAIR to all concerned? 
  • Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?