Economic and community development
An estimated 878 million people — nearly half of them employed — live on less than $1.25 a day. Rotarians bring economic and community development to impoverished communities through projects that provide vocational training, support local entrepreneurs and community leaders, and assist long-term recovery needs in areas struck by natural disaster.
Investing in goodwill and opportunity
Hannah Warren says her experience with Rotary inspired her to become a social entrepreneur. The former Rotary Scholar founded Jhoole, a nonprofit business that offers impoverished women in Maheshwar, India, the training, materials, and international market for hand-woven goods that they need in order to earn a living wage.
With support from the Rotary clubs of Khargone and Loves Park, Illinois, USA, among others, and a grant from The Rotary Foundation, Jhoole acquired looms, cloth, and funds to cover training costs for weaving and sewing.
Warren has also created a direct market for dresses, skirts, and handbags by cultivating partnerships with designers and distributors, including Chicago-based Mata Traders. The weavers frequently produce items from recycled materials, such as scarves made of scraps of fabric donated by Pratibha Syntex.
Jhoole gives 20 percent of its profits to Chetanya Sewa Sansthan, which aids elderly women and people with disabilities. Warren estimates that more than 300 people have benefited from both organizations’ programs. “There is no way I could be doing this [work] were it not for my Ambassadorial Scholarship,” Warren says. “Like Jhoole's programs, Rotary scholarships are not a one-time donation; they are an investment in goodwill.”