History and Goals
Zonta International was founded in Buffalo, New York in 1919. Five women attended a social meeting of Kiwanis, an established all male service club, and conceived the formation of a new service club, to be composed of women who were recognised leaders in their businesses and professions. The primary purposes of the club was to standardise and disseminate business principles and practices and to provide service to humanity. Individual Zonta clubs select, fund and participate in community projects as well as supporting the work of the International Foundation.
Zonta International Service Projects
Zonta International selects service projects in various countries to benefit the legal, political, economic, educational, health and professional status of women around the world. These include:
Zonta International has funded and supported sustainable self-help programs and technical assistance for women in developing nations for more than 50 years.
In 2010 - 2012 Zonta International Service projects are
- Prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Rwanda
- Create safe cities for women in Guatemala and El Salvador
(with UN Women)
- Reduce obstetric fistula in Liberia (with UNFPA)
- End burns violence against women in Cambodia, Nepal and Uganda (with UN
- Provide security and empowerment for women and their families following the earthquake in Haiti (with UN
For more information about Zonta International Award and Service Programmes visit Zonta International's website .
Zonta In Australia
Zonta first started in Australia in 1929 with the establishment of a club in Sydney, one of the first to come into existence outside the United States and Canada, but by 1935 this club had disappeared and it was not until 1965 that Dorothy Thompson was asked to re-introduce Zonta in Australia and New Zealand. New clubs were formed in Melbourne, Sydney and Auckland. Between 1965 and 1971, this remarkable woman organised clubs in all the capital cities in Australia, and in five cities in New Zealand. Today, what was originally District 16, covering Australia and New Zealand is now divided in to four districts - District 16 - New Zealand, District 24 - New South Wales and ACT, District 22 - Queensland, and District 23, covering South Australia and the Northern Territory, Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania.
Three Australians have held the highest office as International Presidents, Leneen Forde (1990-92), Val Sarah (1998-2000) and Mary Magee (2000-2002).
District 23 was formed in 1989 with 33 clubs divided into four areas. Elizabeth Harris became the first Governor of District 23. The first Conference of District 23 was held in Perth in 1991, followed by the Hobart Conference in 1993, Melbourne in 1995, Alice Springs in 1997, Adelaide in 1999, Geelong in 2001, Bunbury in 2003, Glenelg in 2005, Hobart in 2007
and Ballarat in 2009. The 2011 Conference will be held in
District 23 Service Programmes
All Clubs in District 23 support
Zonta International programmes but in addition provide support for local projects. Support by fundraising or active involvement is given. Charitable community groups are able to enlist support of local clubs by direct communication with local clubs.
There are also two special District 23 projects:
The Breast Care Cushion Project
Clubs provide specially shaped cushions to women (and men) who have
undergone breast surgery. The cushions provide comfort in the post-operative phase. Cushions are supplied to most hospitals in each Area. Distribution in hospitals is by Breast Care Nurses.
District 23 Zontians also support the Birthing Kit Project, an initiative of the Adelaide Hills Club. This project
has provided hundreds of thousands of birthing kits to developing
countries that save the lives of women and babies. The kits, costing about
a dollar each, provide for a clean birthing environment thus decreasing
the risk of death from infection and bleeding.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT OUT DISTRICT PROJECTS, CLICK HERE