By Ryan Hyland, Rotary International News -- April 28, 2010

Representatives at the 2010 Council on Legislation approved an enactment April 28 to add a fifth Avenue of Service: New Generations.

After adopting an amendment to change the name from Youth Service, as originally proposed, to New Generations, the Council narrowly supported the addition to article 5 of the Standard Rotary Club Constitution. The 263-250 vote was received by surprised gasps and applause after a short debate.


New Generations joins Club Service, Vocational Service, Community Service, and International Service as the foundation of club activity. Before starting a project, Rotarians are asked to think broadly about how their club and its members could contribute within each avenue.

"It's a significant change – a historic day in Rotary," said Council Chair Mark Daniel Maloney. "Rotarians have always strongly supported youth activities even though they were never part of the four Avenues of Service. I think this strengthens our commitment." 

The Avenue of New Generations recognizes the positive change implemented by youth and young adults involved in leadership development activities, community and international service projects, and exchange programs that enrich and foster world peace and cultural understanding.

Representative Ronald P. Sekkel, of District 5170 (California, USA), proposed the enactment by saying that New Generations is the future of Rotary.

Opponents argued that youth services are already covered by the four Avenues of Service. One representative said that adding a fifth avenue could decrease emphasis on the other four avenues.

Representative Emile M. Rijcken, of District 1900 (Germany), said the new avenue is well deserved. 

"The volume of activity in youth programs shows how strong Rotary can be," she said. "The addition of New Generations to the Avenues of Service will contribute in an enormous way toward public opinion."