Monday, November 22, 2021 - 2:15 PM

​Freedom of the City Conferred on Rotary Clubs

Rotary and image of a gear with Rotary International in spokes

Today, City Council approved a resolution to award the Rotary Clubs of the St. John’s area with the Freedom of the City. The Freedom of the City is the highest award conferred by the City of St. John's. 

“The City of St. John’s acknowledges, with gratitude, the outstanding contributions of Rotary for 100 years of community service,” said Mayor Danny Breen, when signing the resolution into effect. “Rotary’s work in the community is vast and has been integral to the protection, growth, and enrichment of the citizens of St. John’s, and to the province as a whole.”

The first Rotary Club in Newfoundland and Labrador was the Rotary Club of St. John’s, chartered on November 23, 1921. Rotary in St. John’s has since grown to include the St. John’s Northwest, St. John’s East, St. John’s After Hours, Waterford Valley and Rotaract St. John’s Clubs.

The list of projects Rotarians have supported and sponsored in St. John’s is extensive, including Rotary Sunshine Park; the Rainbow Riders Rotary Riding Building; the Bannerman Park Splashpad; re-vitalization of the Waterford River; Rotary Manor; the Northwest Rotary Skatepark and Buckmaster’s Rotary Park. Rotarians have also been involved in the establishment of numerous community endeavors including the Christmas Seal vessel in support of tuberculous care, the Cadet movement, the Cancer Society, the Canadian Mental Health Association, and Iris Kirby House.

“For Rotary’s steadfast commitment to our community and continued support of projects in the areas of mental health and addictions, housing and homelessness, food security, education, and the environment, we proudly award them this important award as they celebrate one hundred years of service in 2021,” proclaimed Mayor Breen.

“As we mark our one-hundredth year of Service Above Self, we reflect on the significant contributions Rotary has made to our city,” said Michelle Yetman, President, Rotary Club of St. John's on behalf of all Rotary Clubs in the City of St. John's. “The vision of a better community for all propelled Rotarians to create and support programs, services, facilities and institutions that improved the lives and well-being of the residents of St. John’s. We look toward the future with hope and optimism that we will build off our history and continue to not only do good work but inspire others to do that same.”

Since 1944 there have been a total of eighteen ceremonies and one formal recognition of the awarding the Freedom of the City. Celebrations of this award take place at a special ceremony on November 23 at City Hall.