It all started with a vision of being able to help the community as Rotaractors even after their University years. A vision that the triumvirate of RAC-DLSU Past President Ruby Anne Dionisio, Immediate Past District Secretary Giselle R. Javier, and District Secretary Noel B. Gonzales made into reality. This vision is now the ROTARACT CLUB OF MANILA (RAC-Manila).
Organized on November 7, 2000, RAC-Manila originally consists of young professionals and students from De La Salle University-Manila, Central Colleges of the Philippines, and the Bureau of Fire Prevention. It was officially chartered on January 11, 2001 under the sponsorship and guidance of Asia’s First Rotary Club, the Rotary Club of Manila, under the Presidency of Sebastian “BUSTER” Arrastia.
PP Abby was elected as Charter President, Giselle was Charter Vice President, Hazel Piadoche was Charter Secretary, and Anne Arias was Charter Treasurer. Also elected were four Charter Directors, Jonah Canuday (Club Service), Ernesto Domingo (Vocational Service), Oliver Alvarez (International Service), and Eva Alzona (Community Service).
Some of the Charter Members includes Annie Rose Ambong, Angelito Rivera, Ryan Dioniso, Simmonnette Saguinsin, Ferlyn Tambanillo, Marvin Jun Tolosa, and Noel Gonzales.
On its first few months of fellowship, Rotaract Club of Manila already made waves in Rotary International District 3810 by being awarded as the District’s ROOKIE CLUB OF THE YEAR 2000 during the Rotaract District 3810 Annual Awards. It continued to reap numerous awards starting RY 2001-2002 when the club was adjudged as the MOST OUTSTANDING ROTARACT CLUB OF THE YEAR and then in RYs 2006-2007, 2007-2008, 2008-2009, 2009-2010, 2010-2011, 2011-2012 and 2013-2014!
It has also produced 9 MOST OUTSTANDING ROTARACT CLUB PRESIDENTS, PDRR Oliver Alvarez (R.Y. 2001-2002), PP Noel Gonzales (R.Y. 2002-2003), PDRR Charlie Chua (RY 2006-2007), PDRR Izel Marie Guatno (2007-2008), PP Goldilyn Uy Lui (2008-2009), PP Tiffany Go Conde (2009-2010), PP Dhelle Tomampoc (2010-2011) PP FM Quimzon (2011-2012) and PP Cassandra Camille Martino (2013-2014).
The club is also an internationally recognized club. It received the prestigious Rotaract Outstanding Project Awards (ROPA) given by Rotary International twice. First during RY 2007-2008 when it was adjudged as the Asia-Pacific Winner for the “Gift of Life Project” and secondly, during RY 2009-2010 when it was adjudged as the Over-all International Winner for the “Response and Relief Program” for the survivors of Typhoon Ondoy (Ketsana).
The Rotaract Club of Manila also produced SEVEN (7) GROUP STUDY EXCHANGE TEAM MEMBERS, (PDRR Oliver Alvarez to Alberta, Canada, PD Caroline Lontoc and DRR Izel Guatno to Hawaii, USA, PT Ritz Asirot to Lyon, France, PT Sol Racelis to Connecticut, USA, PD Neeko Molon to Pennsylvania, USA and IPDRR Charlie Chua to North Carolina, USA. The Group Study Exchange (GSE) program of The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International is a unique cultural and vocational exchange opportunity for young business and professional men and women between the ages of 25 and 40 in the initial years of their professional life.
It has also produced its FOUR (4) DISTRICT ROTARACT REPRESENTATIVES (DRR) (Rotaract’s very own Junior Governor), PDRR Oliver Alvarez (RY 2002-2003), PDRR Charlie Chua (RY 2008-2009), PDRR Izel Marie Guatno (RY 2009-2010) and IPDRR Cassandra Camille Martino (RY2016-2017).
It has also established an impressive network of sister clubs from all over the Philippines and abroad and has hosted numerous visiting Rotaractors and Rotarians from all over the world.
The Rotaract Club of Manila's excellent leadership record was further reinforced when it hosted very successful District activities such as the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards, District Assembly and District Conference multiple times. In 2006, it was a moving force during the 3rd Asia-Pacific Regional Rotaract Conference (APRRC) in Tagaytay City as the club acted as the Over-all Conference Program Committee headed by PDRR Oliver Alvarez. The club was also instrumental in the success of the inaugural Pilipinas Rotaract Convention (PROCON) in 2012 when it took charge again the program with President Michael Edgar Recabar being the Over-All PROCON Chair.
The club is a great supporter of The Rotary Foundation and has a total of three, (3) Paul Harris Fellows, IPP Kristine Karen Reyes (PHF+1), PP JM Cuales, and PP Alain Wilbur Ganipan. It has also numerous Sustaining Paul Harris Fellows.
In June 30, 2012, a group composed of the club’s Past Presidents and Alumni chartered the Rotary Club of Manila Magic, which is now the clubs’ co-sponsoring club with the Rotary Club of Manila.
Truly, the idea that turned into a reality will surely inspire more people to enjoy “Fellowship Through Service.”