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    What you need to know about Rotary E-Clubs

    Rotary e-clubs are Rotary clubs that meet electronically. A 2010 Council on Legislation enactment recognized Rotary e-clubs as part of Rotary International, following a six-year pilot project. As of 1 July 2010, RI has 14 e-clubs, all of them chartered during the pilot.

    What is the difference between Rotary clubs and Rotary e-clubs?

    Rotary e-clubs follow the same policies as all Rotary clubs. The key difference is that an e-club conducts its weekly meeting on the club’s website. Rather than being physically present at an appointed day and time, members may attend meetings at any time and any day of the week.

    As all Rotary clubs do, Rotary e-clubs meet weekly, perform service projects in local and international communities, support The Rotary Foundation, and enjoy fellowship among members. And the keys to their effectiveness are also the same: service-minded members, opportunities for fellowship, and strong leadership.

    During the 2004-10 pilot, e-clubs performed 355 community service projects, 106 international service projects, 55 vocational service projects, and 70 youth service projects. E-clubs gave more than US$150,000 to The Rotary Foundation, including more than $21,500 to Rotary’s US$200 Million Challenge.

    How do e-clubs work?

    E-club meetings are hosted on a unique website. The official meeting time is considered to be when the webmaster or club secretary posts material for weekly discussion, but members may access the site at their convenience at any point during the week. E-club members discuss the item and any other club business through a chatroom feature or other means. To respect the privacy of e-club members, some meeting content or member data is protected from public view.

    Although all Rotary e-clubs meet weekly and conduct business online, some e-clubs do meet in person at various times throughout the year at service projects, quarterly or semiannual dinners, or the RI Convention. Such meetings can enhance fellowship among e-club members; however, they’re strictly optional.

    Who participates in e-clubs?

    For business, professional, and community leaders who are unable to attend a weekly meeting in person (due to physical disabilities, location constraints, or busy schedules), the e-club option offers the opportunity to meet, conduct service projects, and participate in Rotary fellowship. From time to time, Rotarians who miss their regular Rotary club meeting may make up a meeting by attending an e-club meeting online, a valuable service for all members. As of August 2010, 360 Rotarians located in 30 countries are e-club members. Of these, 146 had previously been members of Rotary clubs, including four past district governors.

    Membership in an e-club requires a basic Internet skills set, including the ability to navigate websites with ease. Members should also have a working knowledge of the principles of protecting privacy online, so that no club member compromises another’s sensitive personal information.

    In addition, it is critical that at least one of the founding members of the club be highly proficient in the design and maintenance of the club’s website. The member should be experienced in building a website that meets all of the technological requirements listed below (see attached).

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