By Zuhal Sharp, Rotary Service and Engagement Staff
A Rotary Community Corps (RCC) is a group of people who share our commitment to changing the world through service projects. An RCC is a team of men and women who aren’t Rotarians but who work in partnership with Rotary clubs to improve their communities. They bring enthusiasm, creativity, and sustainability to the projects they design and carry out. They can be leveraged in every stage of a project, from conducting community assessments to project planning, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation.
There are more than 9,000 corps in over 90 countries. Rotary Community Corps are active everywhere Rotary is present: in urban and rural areas, and in both developed and developing countries.
Below are some examples of their work:
- The overarching goal of the RCC of Catania-Nord in Italy has been to create a more open and inclusive community for those with disabilities. Their project “Up… Toccami il cuore… [Up… Touch my Heart…]” developed a partnership between local schools and companies to help disabled students find a job. The RCC’s other major project aims to improve access to the sport of rowing for individuals with Down Syndrome. Throughout the year they offer specialized training sessions and even facilitate competitions at local, regional, national, and international levels.
- The RCC of Battaramulla in Sri Lanka contributes to many diverse parts of its community. The RCC has been particularly active in child education and development. Among other things, it offered subsidized English language courses, provided scholarships to children pursuing higher education, and partnered with a local organization that offers after-school training in leadership development, conflict management, first aid, and music. In addition, the RCC facilitated an eye camp in a low-income community and donated over 200 reading glasses. Finally, the RCC supported the work of a suicide prevention bike-a-thon by providing financial support and meals for the bikers participating.
- The RCC of Teresina-Norte in Brazil is supporting children in their community by distributing school kits, supporting a local Catechism School, and constructing a new community center in partnership with the Municipality of Teresina – Piaui. RCC members are also organizing their 2nd Annual Children’s Day Festival which provides toys and educational classes to participating youth.
- The RCC of Chittagong Downtown in Bangladesh has substantially supported education in its community by providing scholarships and school supplies to over 28 students conducting women and youth empowerment training. Additionally, the group plans to construct two deep tube wells to improve its community’s access to safe and affordable drinking water.
- The RCC of Chania Rotary Club is the first RCC in Greece. The group has donated office supplies to the Kantanos police station, and after a large fire devastated vast areas of East Athens, the RCC collected and distributed basic supplies to those most affected by the destruction.
Rotary Community Corps can exist anywhere within the primary sponsor club’s district. You can find a Rotary Community Corps in your area by contacting your local Rotary club. If there isn’t a local community corps, discuss the idea of starting one with your local Rotary leaders. Sponsoring a Rotary Community Corps, is a great way of empowering people to solve their community’s problems and enhancing Rotary’s reach and impact.
Learn more about regional and demographic trends about RCCs by reviewing the 2018 RCC Survey Report.