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Global Compact and Rotary International to Foster Local Collaboration

( New York, 7 November 2009 ) – The UN Global Compact and Rotary International, a humanitarian service organization of more than 1.2 million professional and community leaders in 200 countries, have agreed to deepen their collaboration and encourage Global Compact Local Networks and the more than 33,000 local Rotary Clubs to seek stronger alignment through joint activities and programs.

The announcement was made on the occasion of Rotary International UN Day, hosted at UN Headquarters today. The event, held annually to celebrate Rotary’s longstanding relationship with the United Nations, brought together more than 1,300 Rotary members from around the world, as well as representatives of various UN organizations and departments.

In a joint letter to be sent to Rotary District Governors and Global Compact Local Network focal points, Rotary International General Secretary Edwin H. Futa and UN Global Compact Executive Director Georg Kell encourage a set of joint activities to advance the shared ideals of “high ethical business practices, sustainable humanitarian action, and world peace and understanding”. More specifically, the letters ask Global Compact networks and Rotary clubs and districts to engage in education and information sharing; local project implementation or collaboration (particularly those addressing the Millennium Development Goals); and coordinating a collaborative effort promoting the best of corporate social responsibility practices and volunteer leadership and action at the local, district or national level.

“Through discussion, collaboration and joint cooperation, Rotary clubs and the United Nations Global Compact can foster high ethical standards, universal principles, and tangible humanitarian successes,” said Futa.  “Together, we can work for the benefit of all.”

In addition, Rotary members are encouraged to facilitate further business participation in the Global Compact, and invite Global Compact network participants to join local Rotary clubs.

“Both Rotary International and the Global Compact are rooted in a shared vision of responsible leadership to address global challenges,” said Georg Kell. “Seeking stronger collaboration between our local networks and Rotary clubs makes much sense, and I am confident that working together will make a significant contribution to the advancement of sustainable development in the spirit of universal values.”

About the United Nations Global Compact

Launched in 2000, the United Nations Global Compact is a both a policy platform and a practical framework for companies that are committed to sustainability and responsible business practices. As a multi-stakeholder leadership initiative, it seeks to align business operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption and to catalyze actions in support of broader UN goals. With over 5,200 corporate signatories in more than 130 countries, it is the world's largest voluntary corporate citizenship initiative. For more information, visit www.unglobalcompact.org

About Rotary International

Rotary International is one of the world’s largest volunteer service organizations with 1.2 million members belonging to more than 33,000 clubs in 200 countries and geographical regions. Rotary members are professional and community leaders who provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards, and help build goodwill and peace in the world.  Rotary clubs initiate service projects to address today’s challenges, including illiteracy, disease, hunger, poverty, lack of clean water, and environmental concerns.  Rotary’s top priority is the global eradication of polio – crippling and potentially fatal disease that still threatens children in parts of Africa and Asia. For more information, visit www.rotary.org .

Media Contacts

Matthias Stausberg
Spokesperson
UN Global Compact
+1-917-367-3423
+1-917-214-1337 (m)
stausberg@un.org  

Vivian Fiore
Rotary International
+1-847-866-3234 p
+1-847-866-8237 f
vivian.fiore@rotary.org