Rotary International Statement of Conduct for Working with Youth
In 2002, the RI Board of Directors adopted a Statement for Working with Youth, which applies to all Rotary activities:
Rotary International strives to create and maintain a safe environment for all youth who participate in Rotary activities. To the best of their ability, Rotarians, Rotarians’ spouse, and partners, and other volunteers must safeguard the children and young people they come into contact with and protect them from physical, sexual, and emotional abuse.
This principle must be followed throughout Rotary, from our districts, clubs, Rotarians and other volunteers at all levels, to our materials, programming and communications with parents and guardians.
Rotary reinforces the Statement of Conduct with additional policies that set the safety of youth as our first priority. Rotary Youth Exchange (RYE) policies address the additional risks that this program carries. Districts must demonstrate compliance with all the Rotary Code of Policies sections on Youth Protection and Youth Exchange. Clubs that work with, or plan to work with, youth must receive a Youth Protection presentation (see Rotary Youth Protection Club Certification below).
Awareness and Prevention
Rotary has a long history of providing services to youth. Each year, more than 300,000 young people participate in Rotary youth programs –RYE, RYLA, and Interact.
Unfortunately, no organization or program is invulnerable to abuse or crises. They can and do occur in even the most seemingly positive settings. Rotary takes youth protection very seriously, and it relies on Rotarians to foster safe environments that prevent abuse and to respond appropriately when it occurs.
Rotary Club Youth Protection Certification (CYPC)
Any club with a Youth program, or an activity in which adults are in a supervisory or one to one relationship with a minor is required to be certified.
Club Youth Program Certification (CYPC), RYE certification and RYLA certification all have separate requirements. Certification for one does not satisfy any other. A Club must have a CYPC to participate in RYE, RYLA, Interact or if the Club participates in any activity in which adults are in a supervisory or one to one relationship with a minor.
Club certification requires the club President, club President Elect, counselors, Mentors, Youth Advisors, and any other individual in a supervisory or one to one relationship with a minor in a Rotary club Youth program or activity to complete the following:
- Read and understand D5180 Youth Protection Policy
- Submit an application for background check.
- Sign the Youth Volunteer Declaration.
Clubs can schedule a YP presentation by the District Youth Protection Chair or member of the YP Committee. After the presentation the District Club Certification Checklist is to be completed and signed by the Club President. To schedule a presentation for your club please contact Mike Garcia, YP Committee Chair, firstname.lastname@example.org . Also, you can contact Mike Garcia if you have any comments or questions.
Rotary Youth Protection Guide
The Rotary Youth Protection Guide is a comprehensive guide to providing a safe and secure environment for all youth involved in Rotary programs and activities. While this Guide covers all youth programs, there is specific information throughout that applies specifically to RYE. All screening, approvals and policies pertaining to youth are the same, with more in-depth requirements for the RYE program and activities. For RYE “volunteers” include among others, club and district Youth Exchange officers, committee members, Rotarian counselors, Rotarians and their spouses/partners who work with students or transport during outings or activities, Host families, travel, etc.
Background Check Application
Background checks for RYE participants must be done through these programs.