Posted on Aug 16, 2021
The Rotary Foundation (Canada) is an official associate foundation of The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International. 

The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty.

The Rotary Foundation (Canada) is a Canadian federally chartered corporation and Canadian registered charity supported solely by voluntary contributions from Rotarians and friends of The Rotary Foundation who share its vision of a better world. 

The Rotary Foundation was created in 1917 by Rotary International's sixth president, Arch C. Klumph, as an endowment fund for Rotary "to do good in the world."
The first thing to understand is what The Rotary Foundation Canada (TRFC) is not.
Donations sent to TRFC are not simply cashed and the money sent to The Rotary Foundation in Evanston. It is important to recognize the significant financial responsibilities TRFC has. Canadian law does not allow a Canadian charity to simply pass money to another charity in a different country. The funds must be managed in Canada.

TRFC is the first and oldest associate foundation of The Rotary Foundation. TRFC was established in 1967. There are now associate foundations in Australia, Brazil, Germany, Korea, India, Japan, and United Kingdom.
The Rotary Foundation Trustees establish specific policies for the management of associate foundations in the TRF Code of Policy. In addition, each Associate Foundation is governed by the charitable and incorporation regulations of their country.
The goals and purposes of an associate foundation are to:
  1. Increase donations in support of The Rotary Foundation and its programs
  2. Provide tax-related benefits to donors
  3. Enhance services and support to Foundation programs.
In a January 2020 article in Rotary Canada magazine Past RI President Wilf Wilkinson described the origins of the TRFC. He stated, “I think The Rotary Foundation Canada elevated the position of Canada in the Rotary world.” Wilkinson said Canadian Rotarians should look on the foundation with “some nationalism and pride,” since it is responsible for a significant investment portfolio through Canadian-based financial institutions.
TRFC is managed by a thirteen-person volunteer board. The chair is Past RI Vice President and current Trustee Dean Rohrs. The TRF Trustee representative is Past RI President Barry Rassin. Past RI President Wilkinson serves as an advisor to the board. The other board members include RI Vice President Valarie Wafer, past RRFCs (Regional Rotary Foundation Coordinators), EMGAs (Endowment Major Gifts Advisors), Rotarians with experience with grants, law, and monetary management.
The administrator of TRFC is Susan Hicks. Susan manages tax receipts, general enquiries, and board meetings. TRFC works closely with the TRF investment committee and finance committee and TRF staff.
The TRFC website was recently revised and renewed. The site is a source of stories on Canadian Rotary Foundation projects and a resource for Canadian Rotarians. This includes information for Canadians making bequests in their estate plans and naming TRFC as a beneficiary.
TRFC has the responsibility to pay out grants to Canadian districts and clubs. For districts and clubs this is seamless. The work by TRFC is in the background. TRFC also coordinates donations of public securities collaborating with a Canadian broker.
In June 2021 TRFC donated US $1 million to PolioPlus. Dean Rohrs stated that this donation is because of the generosity of Canadian Rotarians. “The Rotary Foundation Canada has had good returns on investments and favorable exchange rates. This has permitted this donation of funds from our unallocated investment earnings to support polio eradication.”

TRFC has a long-established partnership with the Government of Canada. This includes financial support for PolioPlus and matching grant projects. In 2020 TRFC completed a five-year venture with the Government of Canada that saw financial support for 143 Global Grants, including those grants awarded to the Rotary Club of Portsmouth, Dominica in District 7030. This resulted in projects worth more than $15 million.
TRFC is also active on social media. Consistently posting information of wide-ranging interest and specific to Canadian Rotarians.
TRFC is exploring future matching grant initiatives, working with Canadian Rotaract clubs and opportunities to support Canadian Rotarians to expand their involvement in Rotary foundation programs.
For 54 years TRFC has worked to support Canadian Rotarians in their commitment to “Do Good in the World.”