Service Above Self since 1915
Southeastern North Carolina's oldest, largest and finest civic organization
Nominations for the 2024 Leaders in Service awards are being requested, both from the club and the general public. This event, to culminate in an awards ceremony May 1, is the club's chief fund-raiser. Rotarian volunteers have begun soliciting sponsorships. The 2023 awards program netted more than $70,000 for our club's projects and grants. Our 2024 goal is $100,000.
Learn more, nominate honorees: go to Leaders in Service site
See TV spot about Leaders in Service nominations
International grant to combat teen pregnancy in West Africa
On Nov. 21, 2023, the club presented a $2,000 grant to Missions of Hope, a faith-based group working in the West African nation of Sierra Leone. This will support the group's "Let Girls be Girls" project, which provides education about pregnancy and sexual health to teenage girls.
Community dinner feeds hundreds, with help from Rotary
Rotarians helped Wilmington's Northside Food Cooperative feed members of more than 150 families at a "community dinner" on Nov. 17. The Wilmington Rotary Club has supplied money and volunteer work to support two such group meals. Of the club's $2,720 contribution, half came from the club's charitable foundation and half from a Rotary District Grant.
Global Grant buys equipment for Honduras health clinic
The Clinica Santa Maria in Reitoca, Honduras, unveiled new diagnostic and treatment equipment bought with a Rotary Global Grant in a ribbon-cutting ceremony Nov. 7. This $47,000 project, led by Wilmington Rotary Club, is a collaboration among multiple clubs in North Carolina, Honduras, and elsewhere. The international Rotary Foundation contributed $30,000; this club gave $6,000, and other local Rotary Clubs $7,000. Other funds came from Rotary District 7730 (Southeastern North Carolina), clubs in Michigan and Pennsylvania, and the Tegucigalpa Sur Rotary Club, which is the project's local sponsor. The clinic, in a remote and impoverished part of the Central America nation, serves a population of 50,000. It was founded by Laura Vinson, who runs the St. Mary Clinic in Wilmington, and strongly supported by Rev. Robert Kus, a former member of this club and retired pastor of Wilmington's St. Mary Catholic Church. "Father Bob" now lives in Honduras. Rotarians Tolis Vardakis and Tom Hoggard of the Wilmington club, along with Nancy Boston and her husband Jim of the Shallotte Rotary Club, attended the Nov. 7 event in Reitoca.
Rotarians help raise walls at Habitat house
The first on-site work day for the Cape Fear Habitat for Humanity "Rotary Build" house took place Oct. 28. Six members of this club, along with Rotarians from other area clubs, Habitat volunteers, and the future homeowner and members of her family raised prefabricated wall sections and installed sheathing. Next for the volunteers were roof sheathing and vinyl siding installation, done during work days Nov. 4 and Nov. 18.
Grant will help support youthful artisans
Kids Making It, which gives young people training in woodworking and entrepreneurship, will benefit from $2,000 from the Wilmington Rotary Club. Half of that is a direct grant, which will help the non-profit buy supplies. The other $1,000 is the club's commitment to buy hand-crafted pens, to be used as gifts for guest speakers. The club presented the $1,000 grant on Oct. 17.
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Nov. 28, Dec. 5, Dec. 12, & Dec. 19, 2023: Volunteer bell-ringers have signed up to help fill Salvation Army kettles. The month before Christmas every year, members of our club solicit donations to the Salvation Army's red kettles. We are assigned to 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays outside Sam's Club, 412 S. College Road. Two Rotarians have signed up for each of our one-hour shifts. Still want to help? Follow this link to sign up.
Nov. 29, 2023: Third Wednesday socials resume from 5 to 7 p.m. at Junction 421, 5104 S. College Road. Open to Rotarians from all area clubs, as well as their guests, this is a casual "happy hour" get-together. The host restaurant provides hors de'ouevres and offers a cash bar.
Dec. 2, 2023: Members with interest or skill in gardening or landscaping are needed for a work day from starting at 8 a.m. at the Rotary Wheel Garden at Greenfield Park. Our club and others in Wilmington are collaborating to provide maintenance tasks at the garden, which is the world's largest Rotary symbol. Volunteers should bring a shovel or spade. Much of the day's work will involve turning over soil in the flower beds, and should be completed by noon.
Dec. 19, 2023: The club's annual holiday lunch meeting will be a fund-raiser for the Salvation Army. In addition to musical entertainment from Opera House Theatre Company, the meeting will feature an auction of various goods and experiences, including desserts, beverages, and entertainment. Come prepared to bid! Other donations will also be gratefully accepted. Cash, checks, credit/debit cards are all welcome. Or we can bill you along with your quarterly dues. To be auctioned off so far: Two tickets to Opera House Theater Company's "The Producers;" an escorted all-day black-water paddle adventure for eight, value $1,000; a 10-inch decorated cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes plus coupons for a year of cakes, value $350; a Paws4People puppy party at your home or office plus an Adventurer Membership to Wilmington Children's Museum, value: $500; Buffalo Trace Bourbon; and a decorated One Belle Bakery carrot cake, value: $200. And other auction items to be announced!
Until Jan. 15, 2024: The Leaders in Service committee needs nominations for our 2024 awards. We will honor three people, one each from the public, private, and non-profit sectors, who have led their organizations in making Wilmington and New Hanover County a better place to live, work, and raise a family. If you nominated anyone who did not receive the award in previous years, it's entirely appropriate to re-submit your nomination, either with updates, or by simply referencing your earlier submission. Make nominations on this page.
Ongoing: Donations are still needed to help get a Ukrainian refugee family settled in Wilmington. This is a joint project of our club and the Wilmington East Rotary Club. Contributions can be mailed to Wilmington East Rotary Club Trust, PO Box 373, Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480.
Ongoing: Anyone participating in a service project is urged to get photographs of Rotarians at work for use in both public outreach and internal communication. Email high-resolution photos to the club's PR Committee. (Contact info is in the club handbook.) Also helpful: Please follow, like, and share the club's social-media pages and posts. See links above.
Our club's background
The club was founded in 1915. For details, go to Club History page.
What we believe
Membership: a choice for fellowship and service
The Wilmington Rotary Club is looking for accomplished business and professional people, of all ages and backgrounds, to become part of our community of service.
For details about how to become a member, go to the Membership page.
Rotary's seven areas of focus
The club's service priorities are based on part on Rotary International's seven areas of focus. (The seventh, the environment, is new in 2021.) The areas of focus are:
Peace and conflict prevention/resolution.
Disease prevention and treatment.
Water and sanitation.
Maternal and child health.
Basic education and literacy.
Economic and community development.