History and Purpose of the Wellington Rotary Charitable Trust

The Wellington Rotary Charitable Trust (WRCT) was established by the Rotary Club of Wellington in 1984 to enable members of the club to contribute financially to worthwhile causes either with a gift in their lifetime or through a bequest in their will, and to support such causes with the funds donated. The Trust also manages the net proceeds from the charitable fundraising activities of the club.

The total value of the capital fund managed by the WRCT, including the Knowles Salmon Bequest and the general endowment is in excess of $1.2 million.  The funds are managed by an independent, professional external funds manager.  Currently this role is filled by Macquarie New Zealand. Funds are bolstered by donations from Club fundraising activities, Club member donations and donations from members of the public. As a registered charity with the Charities Commission, all donations to the Trust are eligible for a charitable gift taxation rebate up to a limit of the annual net income of the donor.

Trustees disburse investment income from the capital fund, and funds raised from club fundraising activities, in the form of grants to chosen charities and causes in accordance with the Trust Deed ,subsequent variation, and the Partnership agreement with the Rotary Club of Wellington.

Funds may be disbursed to projects in the Wellington region or nationally, provided they are in accordance with any wishes specified by the donor. Individual bequests are listed below.

The Huia and Eleanor Hill Fund

A bequest in 1990 from the estate of the late Huia Hill (The Huia and Eleanor Hill Fund) substantially augmented the Trust’s initial funds. The terms of this fund are to give preference to deserving young people participating in various Rotary youth exchange programmes.

The Knowles Salmon Bequest

The WRCT also manages funds on behalf of the Knowles Salmon Bequest whose purpose is to support organisations providing services related to the welfare of the elderly.  Bernie Knowles, a former President of RCW, left a substantial bequest to the Club to be invested, the interest earned was to be applied to "the provision of services related to the welfare of the elderly". In early in 2012 the Knowles family decided to dissolve the C W Salmon Trust (a past president of the Rotary Club and father in law of Sam Knowles), and in accordance with the Deed disperse a third of the capital to the Boys Scouts, and combine the residual with the Bernie Knowles Bequest. The combined fund would then become known as the Knowles Salmon Bequest, with its purposes being supporting the elderly and medical research.

Ron Greenwood Bequest

In 2007 Ron Greenwood left a bequest to the Trust “For the general purposes of the Greater Wellington Region.”

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