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About Us

Finding Inspiration in Every Turn

Global group of women who got together during the pandemic.  Rotary International Women’s Group (RIW) was founded on April 7th, 2020 during the covid-19 pandemic by Rtn. Sharmila Nagarajan, member of RC London Tower Hamlets. The group was founded via whatsapp with the aim to connect female Rotarians all over the world and raise a common,

women-oriented project driven by female Rotarians of all five continents.

In a next step, bi-weekly zoom meetings were implemented , that are celebrated either as speaker sessions or as work meetings. By May 2020 the group had more than 240 women Rotarians from more than 30 countries, covering all five continents. It was decided that going beyond Covid - the group will work together on Menstrual Hygiene  which emerged as a common issue across the globe, with different local needs. 

A formal application for ROTARY ACTION GROUP was filed under the leadership of Rtn. Denise Kilschen, supported by the core team and the RAG MHH was formally approved by the Board of Directors on March 21.

Our Vision and Mission

Vision

To enhance the dignity to women and girls and enable them to live a self-determined life. Have access to education

Economic self-maintenance.

Mission

To have a equitable world for the female gender where she is provided access to basic wash and sanitation facilities and sustainable period products , in order to be able to have a equal chance at life , livelihood and independence to make her choices.

Board of Directors

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Sharmila Nagarajan

Chairman, RAG MHH

President RC of Tower Hamlets, London.

Email-ID:sharmg24@gmail.com

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Vidhya Srinivasan

Vice Chairman , RAG MHH

Rotary Club of Madras Temple City, RID 3232, India.

Email-ID:vidusri.3232@gmail.com

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Inés Verónica García

 

Treasurer,RAGMHH

Member of RC San Telmo Constitución, Buenos Aires,Argentina.

Email-ID:estudiomurua.ines@gmail.com

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Denise Klischan

Secretary, RAG MHH

Past President RC Ibiza, Spain.

Email-ID:rotary@deniseklischan.com

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Dr.Meenakshi Bharat

Project Director, RAG MHH

Member RC of Bangalore West, India RID 3190

Email-ID:meenakshibharath@gmail.com

Regional Directors

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Edgardo Murua

Regional Director - Latin Americas RC San Telmo Constitución,Buenos Aires,RID,Argentina

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Hema Doraisamy

Regional Director for Asia.

member of RC of Lake Gardens Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Email-ID:

hemadoraisamy@gmail.com

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Dr Naana Agyemand-Mensa

Regional Director Western Africa , RAG MHH RC Accra-Airport, Ghana

Email-ID:

naanaam35@yahoo.com

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Veronica Lozano

 

Veronica is “RC Juárez Campestre” , Mexico.

Email-ID:

verolobel@yahoo.com.mx

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Patricia Vytialingam Hoggarth

Regional Rotary Club of Workington, Cumbria , RID 1190 UK.

Email-ID:

pat.vytialingam@gmail.com

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Dr. Emilie Nzerbie

Regional Director

Rotary Club of Aladinma Oweri, RID 9142, Nigeria

BYLAWS of ROTARY ACTION GROUP for
MENSTRUAL HEALTH & HYGIENE - RAGMHH

ARTICLE I - NAME
Section 1.1. The name of this Rotary Action Group that shall be registered as association in
 the Registry of Associations at the Municipal
Court of Hamburg shall be Rotary Action Group for Menstrual Health & Hygiene – RAGMHH.

ARTICLE II - PURPOSE
Section 2.1. The purpose of the association is to promote education and development cooperation.
2.1.1. The main goal is to enhance dignity to women and girls and enable them to live a self- determined life, have access to education and economic self-maintenance and break the circle of dependence (parents, husbands etc.).

Besides that, it is the goal to reduce “menstrual waste” and “period poverty”. Women and men need knowledge of biology (Menstrual Health and Hygiene = MHH - according to its initials in English-, birth control, disease prevention etc.) to create more equality in societies and amongst partners. Especially, boys and men live with the taboo not to talk about MHH, and consequently, they have no knowledge about it. Given that this is a natural process that affects both partners in their cohabitation, all actions of RAGMHH are directed to girls and boys, women and men.

2.1.2. The purpose of the bylaws is realized  in particular by:

1) break the silence about MHH 

  • Education campaigns first in Rotary Clubs, then in schools and villages to educate boys and girls, women and men to know everything about MHH, the female cycle, pregnancies, birth control, hygiene measures etc. to create awareness of MHH and break taboos.

  • Create awareness of this topic all over the planet to help raise funds and take action.

2) educate girls and boys, women and men about MHH

  •  Education programs at schools, villages through on-site Rotary Clubs and local stakeholders (such as local civic bodies, government, NGO’s,religious leaders, tribal leaders,politicians, doctors etc.)

  •  Regular counselling: Provide girls/women with information about the use of these articles (pro’s and con’s of each item with regards to:health, age, reusability, environment,need of water, hours of use etc.),break taboos and educate.

3) improve life circumstances of girls and women in underprivileged areas.

  • access to water and lavatories and provide girls and women with reusable and/or biodegradable menstrual hygiene articles of their choice:

a) Menstruation cups 
b) Biodegradable sanitary and/or cloth napkins
c) Reusable sanitary and/or cloth napkins

These articles will be provided against payment of a small donation of an amount the woman can afford. Alternatively, it will be given for free.

  • Provide schools/villages with water supply and gender-based lavatories and take care of its maintenance

through local Rotary Clubs or other local stakeholders.

4) empower women economically and, thus, strengthen their self-determination

  • create micro-economies of manufacturing reusable sanitary cloths The local project group obtains these articles by buying them from manufacturers or by creating micro-businesses of manufacturing to add the value of earning money to a village.

5) reduce “menstrual waste” in “first-world-countries”

  •  contribute to the environmental protection by providing biodegradable products and menstruation cups.

6) reduce “period poverty”  provide girls and women with reusable menstruation cups or reusable sanitary pads.

Every project carried out under the umbrella of the RAGMHH must be sustainable and must show a needs assessment and measurable success.

RAGMHH shall operate in compliance with Rotary International’s policies for Rotary Action Groups,but it shall not be an agency of, or controlled by, Rotary International.

Section 2.2. Any profit motive is excluded.

Section 2.3. The association's scope of action extends to the whole world.

ARTICLE III – DOMICILE and REGISTRATION
Section 3.1. The association's domicile, which can be modified by agreement of the general assembly, is established at Hilgendorfweg 7, 22587 Hamburg, Germany.
Section 3.2. The association shall be registered in the local Association Registry.

ARTICLE IV - MEMBERSHIP
Section 4.1. Membership in the Rotary Action Group for Menstrual Health & Hygiene shall be open to any interested individual, Rotarians and non-Rotarians as well as corporations as long as the physical and legal persons agree and act in
agreement with the Rotary Code of Policies. The minimum age is 18 years. RAGMHH reserves the right to exclude from or deny membership to persons who do not fulfill this requirement.
Section 4.2. Memberships are offered on an annual and 3-year basis for individuals and corporations.
Dues for each type of membership will be set by the Board of Directors and published on the homepage.
Payment of dues falls due on July 1st each year. New members pay the proportional amount for their first year of membership at the moment of filing as members. Membership is established by registration via the form on the association's website www.ragmhh.org and payment of the membership fee by credit card.

Section 4.3. The rights of the members of the association are:
1) To attend the sessions of the general assembly with voice and vote.
2) To elect the officers.
3) Those members who are Rotarians,
Rotavators or peace fellows can be elected as officers.
4) Exercise the representation conferred on them in each case.
5) Expose before the general assembly and the board of directors everything they consider can contribute to making the life of the association fuller and the achievement of the basic social objectives more effective.
6) To request and obtain explanations about the administration and management of the board of directors or the association' representatives.
7) Be informed about the state of the account and receive information about the activities of the association.
8) To use the common services that the association establishes or has at its disposal.
9) To be part of the working groups.
10) To have a copy of the Bylaws.
11) To be informed of the composition of the governing and representative bodies.
12) To be heard before disciplinary measures are taken against them and to be informed of the facts that give rise to such measures.
13) To challenge the agreements of the bodies of the Association that they deem to be contrary to the Law or the Bylaws.
Section 4.4. The duties of the members of the association are:
1) To conform their actions to the statutory regulations.
2) To comply with the agreements of the general assembly and the rules indicated by the board of directors to carry them out.
3) To pay on time the fees, extraordinary expenses and other contributions that according to the statutes may correspond to each member.
4) Maintain the collaboration necessary for the proper functioning of the association. Section 4.5. The reasons for leaving the association are:
1) By decision of the person concerned, who must inform the board of directors in writing.
2) Failure to pay the fixed fees.
3) Failure to comply with statutory obligations.

ARTICLE V - BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Section 5.1. The Rotary Action Group shall be governed by a Board of Directors consisting of
1) the President,
2) the Vice-president,
3) the Secretary,
4) the Treasurer,
5) the Medical Director.
No less than 80 percent of the directors shall be active Rotarians, Rotaractors or Peace Fellows to 20 percent of the board positions may be occupied by independent outside board member(s), who is not a Rotarian, Rotaractor or a Peace Fellow.

Direct family members (e.g. parents and kids,siblings, spouses) cannot be part of the Board of Directors at the same time.
The Executive Board in the sense of § 26 paragraph 1 BGB [German Civil Code] are all members of the Board of Directors.
The Association shall be represented judicially and extrajudicially by three members of the Executive Board jointly.
Section 5.2. Terms for directors last three years, with exception of the terms of the Vice-president, the Secretary, and the Fundraising Director during the first office period after constitution of the RAGMHH, that last 2 years.
All following terms last three years.Directors’ terms are renewable for up to six years. After six consecutive years of service (or after 5 consecutive years in the case of the first Vice-president, Secretary and Fundraising Director), directors are ineligible to serve until three years have passed. Terms shall commence on 1 July of the calendar year elected and end on
30 June of the terminal year.
Section 5.3. The officers shall perform the duties and functions usually attached to the title of their respective offices, together with such other duties as may be prescribed by the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors. The officers perform
their appointment unsalaried.

Section 5.4 The president of RAGMHH shall appoint a Technical Officer to take office on the next 1 July. The appointment shall be endorsed by two-thirds of the Board of RAGMHH. The Technical Officer role shall be filled by a member of the TRF
Cadre of Technical Advisers with professional expertise in the Action Group’s area of concentration. The Technical Officer shall serve as a liaison between the RAGMHH and the TRF Cadre of Technical Advisers and shall be responsible for
maintaining and increasing the level of expertise in the Action Group.

ARTICLE VI – REGIONAL DIRECTORS
The Rotary Action Group shall have Regional Directors for as many geographical regions as deemed necessary.
Section 6.1. RAGMHH deals with a delicate issue that is linked to cultural, religious and tribal traditions. It is crucial for any Rotarian seeking help at the RAGMHH to find an assistant who knows the social and cultural background of the help seeker. Therefore, the Regional Directors shall be chosen amongst the different continents/sub-continents of the world.
Section 6.2. The Regional Directors shall also count with certain knowledge of the topic MHH, either because of their profession, their studies or personal experience in volunteer work related to MHH. They do not necessarily need to be
Rotarians.
Section 6.3. Regional Directors also do the call to action in their region. They shall reach out to DG’s of their area, present the Rotary Action Group and encourage them to involve Rotarians and Rotary Clubs to realize MHH-related projects
in their communities and to establish a District MHH-Chair.

Section 6.4. The office of Regional Director has no fixed term. Regional Directors can be added or exchanged at any time, depending on the wishes of the people involved and the criterion of the Board.

ARTICLE VII - MEETINGS
Section 7.1. An annual meeting of the members shall take place at the RI Convention each year, or elsewhere as determined by the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors. At this meeting the installation of incoming directors and officers and other business shall take place. The exact date, time, and location of the annual meeting of the members shall be set by the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors and announced to the members at least 30 days prior to the
meeting.

Section 7.2. An annual meeting of the incoming Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors shall take place immediately subsequent to the annual meeting of the members.
Section 7.3. Resolutions passed at General Meetings and at Board meetings shall be minuted and signed by the Board.

ARTICLE VIII – GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Section 8.1. The general assembly is the supreme body of the association. Its members are members in their own right and cannot be waived. The members of the Association, meeting in a legally constituted general assembly, shall decide by majority vote on matters within the competence of the assembly.All members shall be bound by the resolutions of
the general assembly, including those absent,those who disagree and those present who have abstained from voting.

Section 8.2. The general assembly has the following powers:
1) To adopt resolutions on the legal representation, management and defence of the interests of its members.
2) To control the activity and management of the board of directors.
3) To approve the annual budgets of expenditure and income, and the annual report of activities.
4) Electing the members of the board of directors, removing them and replacing them.
5) To establish the general lines of action that ill allow the aims of the association to be fulfilled.
6) To fix the fees that the members of the association have to pay.
7) To dissolve and liquidate the association.
Section 8.3. The general assembly must meet in ordinary session at least once a year.
The general assembly shall meet in extraordinary session whenever necessary, at the request of the board of directors or when requested by a number of members of the association representing at least 10% of the total number of
members, in the latter case within a period not exceeding fifteen days.
Section 8.4. The call of the general assembly sessions, both ordinary and extraordinary, must be made by e-mail or by digital message on the mobile phone (whatsapp, telegram etc.) that allows for a record to be kept. Notices of the
meeting must be placed in the places, as well as by publication on the homepage determined, at least 15 days in advance. The call must also be addressed individually to all members. The notice must specify the day, time and place of the meeting, as well as the agenda. Questions raised by each working group must be included in the agenda of the general meeting, provided that the board has been notified at least five (5) natural days in advance. The president of the association chairs the sessions of the general assembly. If he/she is not present, he/she is replaced by the vice-president. The person who holds this position in the board of directors or the person who replaces him/her must act as secretary.
The secretary must take the minutes of each session of the general assembly, at which the minutes of the previous session must be read for the purpose of approval or amendment. In any case, five (5) days before, the minutes and any other document must be available to the members in the social premises or online. 

Section 8.5. The general meeting is validly constituted at first call with the attendance of at least 1/3 of the members with voting rights,present or represented.It is validly constituted at second call whatever the number of members present or represented.The second call must be made half an hour after the first call and in the same place and must have been announced together with the first call.

Section 8.6. Each member of the association has one vote at the general assembly.Resolutions must be taken by a simple majority of votes of those present or represented.In order to adopt agreements on the separation of a member, the modification of the statutes, the dissolution of the association, the dispositionor alienation of assets and remuneration of the members of the representative body, a qualified majority of those present or represented is required, which will result when the affirmative votes exceed half of all presented votes.

Section 8.7. Members whose membership dues are pending have no right to vote until their dues are paid.

ARTICLE IX - ELECTION OF DIRECTORS AND OFFICERS
Section 9.1. A Nominating Committee shall be appointed by the Board of Directors of RAGMHH and so indicated in a notice to the members. Notice sent by mail or transmitted via email to the last known address of the members shall be
considered good and sufficient notice. The Nominating Committee shall receive nominations for expiring Director positions until  specified deadline, whereupon nominations shall be closed. The Nominating Committee may
also offer its own nominees for election. All nominees must indicate their willingness to serve by a specified deadline to be considered valid nominees for election.

Section 9.2. The names of the nominees for Director positions shall be distributed to the members, along with a voting ballot, at least 30 days prior to the annual meeting of the members. Ballots may be sent by mail or transmitted via email to the last known address of all members in good standing. Ballots shall indicate that they must be returned to the Nominating Committee at least seven (7) days prior to the annual meeting. Votes can also be cast online via the members' area on the homepage.

Section 9.3. The Nominating Committee shall tally the votes cast and announce the newly elected incoming directors prior to the annual meeting of the members.
Section 9.4. At its annual meeting the incoming members of the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors shall meet and elect from its members the incoming officers of the Rotary Action Group, who shall become officers-elect on the first day
of July following their election and shall take office on the next 1 July. As an appointed role, the Technical Officer is
excluded from the election process.
Section 9.5. A vacancy in the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors, or any office, shall be filled by action of the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors.
Section 9.6. A director or officer may be removed from office by a two-thirds vote of the Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors, or, by a two-thirds vote of the membership.

ARTICLE X - FISCAL MATTERS and NON-PROFIT-STATUS
Section 10.1. The fiscal year of the Rotary Action Group shall be the same as the Rotary year, i.e. 1 July through 30 June.
Section 10.2. This association does not have any founding assets.The Rotary Action Group’s dues shall be set by
the Board of Directors and shall be due on 1 July of each year. The Rotary Action Group’s dues shall be of a reasonable amount.
Section 10.3. Funds shall be deposited in a financial institution approved by the Board of Directors.
The economic resources of the association are obtained from member fees, official or private subsidies and/or donations, inheritances or legacies.
Section 10.4. All the members of the association are obliged to support it financially, through fees, in the manner and proportion determined by the general assembly, on the proposal of the board of directors. The general assembly may
establish ordinary periodic annual or biannual fees and extraordinary fees.

Section 10.5. The Association shall exclusively and directly pursue non-profit purposes within the meaning of the section "Tax-privileged purposes" of the German Fiscal Code (§§ 51 ff AO).
Section 10.6. The association is selflessly active,it does not primarily pursue its own economic purposes.The Association's funds may only be used for purposes in accordance with the Statutes. The members of the Association may not receive any benefits from the Association's funds in their capacity as members. No person may be favoured by expenses that are alien to the purpose of the association or by disproportionately high remuneration.

ARTICLE XI – HARASSMENT-FREE ENVIRONMENT
Section 11.1. RAGMHH is committed to maintaining an environment that is free of harassment. Harassment is broadly defined as any conduct, verbal or physical, that denigrates,insults or offends a person or group based on
any characteristic (age, ethnicity, race, colour,abilities, religion, socioeconomic status, culture,sex, sexual orientations or gender identity).All members and individuals attending or participating in the RAGMHH meetings, events or activities should expect an environment free of harassment and shall help maintain an environment that promotes safety, courtesy,
dignity, and respect to all. All allegations of criminal activity should be referred to appropriate local law enforcement authorities.

Section 11.2 RAGMHH shall promptly address allegations of harassment brought before it and shall not retaliate against those making the allegation. The Action Group’s Board, or a committee appointed by the chair for this purpose, shall review and respond to each allegation of harassment within a reasonable time-frame, typically one month. If the president
or other leaders of the Action Group is/are the alleged offender, the immediate past chair (or most recent chair), directly or by appointment of a committee for this purpose, shall review and respond to the allegation. If the alleged offender
is a member of the Action Groups’ board, he or she is expected to recuse himself or herself from the discussion. The review and/or investigation shall be dependent on the circumstances including the severity and pervasiveness of the
behavior.RAGMHH shall report allegations of harassment to the alleged offender’s club president and district governor.
Section 11.3 RAGMHH shall protect the safety and wellbeing of all youth participating in its activities and comply with Rotary International’s youth protection policies. Membership or affiliation shall not be granted to a person who is
known to have engaged in sexual abuse or harassment or who is prohibited from being a member of a Rotary Club.

ARTICLE XII - COMPLIANCE WITH RI POLICIES
The Rotary Action Group shall comply with Rotary International’s policies for Rotary Action Groups, as set forth in the Rotary Code of Policies. The Rotary Action Group’s Board of Directors and executive officers shall familiarize
themselves with these policies and any amendments to these policies as adopted by the RI Board of Directors from time to time.

ARTICLE XIII - DISSOLUTION
Section 13.1. This association will be dissolved either by the fulfilment of the purposes that determined its creation or, if not, by the will of the members expressed in the general assembly convened for this purpose, or by a final court
decision.

Section 13.2. Once the dissolution has been agreed, the general assembly must take the appropriate measures both regarding the purpose of the assets and rights of the association and the purpose, extinction and liquidation of any pending operations. The members of the Association are exempt from personal liability. Their responsibility is
limited to fulfilling the obligations they have voluntarily undertaken.Members may not receive any shares of the
Association's assets upon their resignation or upon the dissolution or annulment of the Association. The functions of liquidation and execution of the resolutions referred to in this article are the responsibility of the board of directors, if the
general assembly has not conferred this mission on a liquidation committee specially appointed for this purpose.
In the event of the dissolution of the association or in the event of the discontinuation of tax- privileged purposes, the assets of the association shall be transferred to a legal entity under public law or another tax-privileged corporation for the
purpose of promoting public health and education.

ARTICLE XIV – DATA PROTECTION
The following data is collected from members as part of the membership administration: Name, first name, address, e-mail address, mobile phone number, date of birth, copy of identity card or passport, Rotary Club, profession. This data is processed and stored within the framework of membership. Furthermore, the association publishes the data
of its members internally as well as externally only after corresponding resolutions of the general meeting and excludes the data of members who have objected to publication.

ARTICLE XV - AMENDMENTS
Section 15.1. These bylaws may be amended only by the Board of Directors of the RAGMHH.
Section 15.2. Notwithstanding the above provision, the Rotary Action Group may adopt administration procedures not in conflict with the provisions of these bylaws and the constitution and bylaws of Rotary International.
ARTICLE XVI – APPLICATION OF LAW
This association is ruled under German law.

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