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What is a Rotaract Club you might ask? Even though you can opt to join a Rotary Club at age 18 or for that matter at age 30 you won’t find many members in that age group. This was especially true in the past when Rotary Clubs were all men. Interestingly, women were admitted to Rotaract clubs right from the start.
In 1968, a Rotary club in a university town in North Carolina started a club for university students aged 18 to 30. They called it a Rotar (after Rotary) and Act (after a high school program called Interact - although RI claims it was short for Action) The idea spread rapidly throughout the world of Rotary. In none-university communities members were made up of young professionals.

The Kingston Club sponsors one of each, a Queen’s University club whose current president is Alyssa Labrie and a young professionals club whose president is Francecso Ambrogi. At the March 16th, Kingston Club meeting each spoke on how they are rebuilding the Rotaract Clubs after the devastation wrecked by the COVID pandemic.

The Rotaract Club of Kingston - Francecso Ambrogi President

As Ambrosia knew nobody in Kingston when he moved here with his wife, he sympathizes with refugees and others new to the community, leading to this year's service focus being refugees and newcomers to our community. This takes the form of social events and fun activities, financial support, and addressing immediate needs like winter clothing.

Francesco thanked Rtn, Sam for hosting parties at The Spire for refugee kids and their families for Halloween and Winter Wonderland.

The clubs main fundraising event of the year was Fall in Love with Dance in partnership with 5678 Dance Studio and dance teacher Claude Marc Forest in which they raised $700.
They also participated in the KEYS Clothing Drive by organizing the Rotaract Club of Kingston Clothing Bazaar at The Spire where they worked with KEYS, Rotary Club of Kingston-Frontenac, Rotary Club of Kingston, ACFOMI, and bcc Southeast.
Kingston Rotaract also participated at RYLA, drove in the Nut Drive (Francesco sold all his boxes), helped out at the Robinson Garden, the Fall Fair, and food box packing at the Community Food Redistribution Warehouse.

Rotaract Club of Kingston has been growing. They are now up to 9 active members with 4 more interested. Francesco introduced President Elect Aaliyah Strachan,  who works at City of Kingston but couldn't be here today. Kingston Rotaract's focus next year will be on youth homelessness in the City.


A Debate for 18 to 30 year olds

Rotary vs Rotaract


Rotaract Club of Queen’s University - Alyssa Labrie President

Labrie is a 4th year student at Queen's nearing completion of a Bachelor of Health Sciences. She was heavily involved with Interact while at La Salle Secondary School and joined Rotaract when she got to Queen's. She is also Rotarian Laurie Labrie's daughter.
Queen's Rotaract saw its membership and activities fall off during the pandemic, as virtual learning and lack of interpersonal connection hampered efforts. There was not much "rehiring" for executive roles after last year and most experienced members had graduated.
Alyssa took on the role of President at the beginning of the fall semester on short notice. With such a late start they unfortunately missed a great opportunity for drumming up new members as the Club Fair in City Park in September and the ARC Club Fair a little later in the semester.
Garrett Cole and Paul Elsley have been helping with getting the club restarted and Alyssa starting ‘hiring” executives in November. They created a team of 9 people and started Rotaract activities in January.
The main focus for the semester has been the Trevor Project, which provides mental health support for LGBTQ+ youth, for which they've raised $200 through their Valentine's Day Bake Sale. They're also working with Liz Good raising funds for Upendo Daima with a St. Patrick's Day Can Drive.
The Club has alreeady begun "hiring" executive personel for 2023-2024 year and want to expand the club. Alyssa and a few others are graduating, but 5 of their members are returning for next year. Queen's Rotaract is excited to join in with any of our initiatives.

March of each year is World Rortaract Month. World wide there are 203,298 Rotaractors in 10,698 Rotaract clubs in 180 countries.