Club History

A people without knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.

~ Marcus Garvey


In early 1975, a committee, comprising a few members of the Rotary Club of Barbados, met with the purpose of establishing a second Rotary Club in Barbados. After many meetings, a charter was issued by Rotary International to the Rotary Club of Barbados West (RCOBW). Miles Rothwell, a Past President of the Rotary Club of Barbados was the Club’s Charter President. Mr. Rothwell was also a past District Governor.

RCOBW first met at the Colony Club Hotel in St. James. The Club has had its share of meeting places:  Colony Club, The Coach House, Greensleeves Hotel, Sandy Lane Hotel, Royal Westmoreland Restaurant and Club House, Discovery Bay Hotel, Bagatelle Great House and it’s current location St. James Parish Church, Mini Education Centre, Holetown St. James. It is the only Rotary Club in Barbados which meets in the evening, with scheduled club meetings on Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m.

The early years were times of learning about Rotary and of attempting to put into practice the principles of Rotary. At first the Club rendered assistance mainly to the Thelma Vaughn Home for physically handicapped children and to the Challenor Home for mentally retarded children. However, it was not long before the club’s community outreach programs included the giving of toys to needy children at Christmas time “Toy Cheer” and the furnishing of assistance to many community projects including providing amenities to children’s homes, sports equipment to the youth and household furniture and stoves to the underprivileged. 

In these early years, the club established its first children’s play-park, at Folkestone, St. James (in collaboration with the Parks and Beaches Commission). In addition to the establishment of additional play parks, RCOBW successfully completed the Batts Rock Project. In collaboration with the National Conservation Commission, this project helped to improve the Batts Rock beach facility.  This park comprises of two (2) acres of land and boasts a Children’s Play Park, recreational facilities, toilet facilities and changing rooms. These activities were financed by the Club’s various fund-raising activities. During these early years, members were very enthusiastic and many fellowship activities were shared.

Our Projects

RCOBW has maintained an active membership of around forty Rotarians.  Despite this small size, over the years the Club has taken on several projects, which have been completed successfully.  Some of these include:

Community Development Project

Assisting the residents of Greenwich Village, St. James in refurbishing their meeting hall (Greenwich Hall) and entering into a joint venture called the Greenwich Village Community Development Project to provide social, employment-related and spiritual activities for the Greenwich Village Community at Greenwich Hall.


In association with ACP Associates Ltd., the completion of a $100,000 project resulting in refurbishment (involving re-flooring and re-roofing), of St. Swithins Church Hall and Community Centre in St. Lucy.

School Donation

In conjunction with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Centre for Prevocational Training, the construction of a building with a Kiln at the Dentre’s headquarters; Pine Plantation Road, St. Michael. The Centre has introduced a School for Clay to teach clay-craft to mentally and physically challenged children. The club has also donated a Potters wheel to the Centre.

Additional Projects

Several other projects and activities have been successfully carried out over the years in order to raise the funds used to finance our programmes. Other funded projects include:

  • Medical Assistance

    A Medical Assistance Programme in which artificial limbs have been provided to the physically challenged

  • Emergency Ambulance

    The purchase of a fully equipped emergency ambulance, which was donated to the Casualty Department of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital

  • Rennovations

    A major contribution towards the renovation of the Boy Scouts Headquarters;

  • Relief

    Contributions to hurricane and other relief programmes

  • Recreation

    The establishment of play-parks.

  • Repairs

    Home repairs for persons in need.

Rotary West continues to weather life’s challenges and the idea that was formulated in 1975 has seen the Club become a strong cog in Rotary International’s wheel, as it continues to fulfill its mandate in District 7030. Rotary West is a vibrant part of the worldwide fellowship of Rotary, using our time and talents to assist where needed and striving to hold true to the Rotary ideal of “service about self”.