What Does New Generations mean?
New Generations refers to the youngest generation in the family of Rotary. Many are participants in Rotary’s youth and young adult programs: Interact, Rotaract, Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA), and Rotary Youth Exchange. Others are serviceminded young people involved in Rotary club and district activities.
Past RI President Luis Vicente Giay coined the term New Generations when he shared his belief that the future of Rotary relied on involving young people in the organization’s programs and activities. At the 1996 RI Convention in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, he said:
“Our vision for the future, now more than ever, is the difference between success and failure. The New Generations are our investment in the future. Let us begin to build that future today.”
New Generations Service became Rotary’s fifth Avenue of Service in 2010. It is defined in article 5 of the Standard Rotary Club Constitution:
New Generations Service recognizes the positive change implemented by youth and young adults through leadership development activities, involvement in community and international service projects, and exchange programs that enrich and foster world peace and cultural understanding.
Our Rotary club is committed to involving youth and young adults in their vocational, community, and international service projects, and to providing programs and resources that support them.
New Generations and the Avenues of Service
Rotarians have long been committed to serving youth in their communities. The RI Strategic Plan encourages clubs to balance activities in all five Avenues of Service, but some fall under more than one. The New Generations Avenue of Service acknowledges the exceptional work that Rotarians do with youth and young adults while encouraging clubs to spread their reach even further. It also encompasses a fundamental idea: that every Rotarian has a responsibility to support the personal and professional success of young people while recognizing the diversity of their needs.