Programs and Initiatives
The Rotary Club of Robbinsville Hamilton performs a variety of hands-on service projects in its two communities while its Foundation supports charitable causes locally and around the world. Here is a sampling of the club’s programs and initiatives:

Flags for Heroes

For the first three weeks in November, hundreds of full size American flags fly on the grounds of Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Hamilton. Residents and companies sponsor the flags to honor heroes in their lives or in the community.
Net proceeds from Flags for Heroes are donated to non-profit organizations in Mercer County, including the Mercer County Military Action Council to support its Send a Hero Home for the Holidays program.
The club began its Flags for Heroes program in the fall of 2020. 
Each year, club members and other volunteers are greeted with shouts of encouragement, honking horns and a thumbs up from drivers as the popular display is assembled near the hospital’s busy intersection.

Send Hunger Packing/Food Insecurity

The club helps meet the challenge of food insecurity through several programs and donations. Chief among them is Send Hunger Packing, a twice-a-year effort in which members collect food and cash donations outside Foley’s Family Market in Hamilton to feed hungry families and students served by the Mercer Street Friends Food Bank. The collections yield thousands of pounds of food and hundreds of dollars in cash each year. Once a month, members gather at the Food Bank to help assemble food items into packages for delivery. 
The club also provides annual donations to Mobile Meals of Hamilton and Robbinsville Meals on Wheels for food deliveries to the homebound. In one extraordinary event in a time of great need during the pandemic, club members and other volunteers packed nearly 720 cases or 155,400 nonperishable meals over the course of eight days to fill shelves at 28 area food banks, pantries and community kitchens.

Megan's Place

In 1994, our Rotary Club, only two years old, raised $100,000 and secured a $50,000 Green Acres grant to purchase and tear down the house where 7-year-old Megan Kanka of Hamilton was murdered at the hands of a convicted child molester.
In place of the house on Barbara Lee Drive, across the street from the Kanka residence, the club built Megan’s Place, a quiet park in Megan’s honor, where the club holds events twice a year for students at Megan’s old school, Sayen Elementary.
The club is now in the midst of a $35,000 capital fund-raising campaign for a new sidewalk, removal and trimming of trees, updating electrical service and lighting, replacement of shrubs and other plants, and perpetual care.
GoFundMe contributions to the Megan’s Place Fund, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, are being accepted at https:\\

Miracle League of Mercer County

In 2004-2005, our club raised more than $300,000 to build a barrier-free field that allows players with special needs to play organized baseball as part of the Miracle League of Mercer County.
The Miracle League field was the first of its kind in the Northeast and only the 15th in the entire U.S. The league has continued to grow through the years and today includes more than 120 players on 10 teams.
Miracle League athletes get to experience being part of a team, supporting each other and developing positive, encouraging relationships. Their success on the baseball field translates into improved self-esteem and confidence while developing their physical and social skills. Volunteer buddies, meanwhile, get to experience first-hand what it means to give back to the community and participate in a truly inclusive environment as they support and encourage their players and team.

Community Support

A primary goal of our club is to make a positive difference in our communities.
Our club’s Foundation provides financial support to a variety of non-profit groups, including those that provide basic needs for struggling individuals and families.
The club also has a presence at annual events like Hamilton’s Octoberfest, Robbinsville’s Community Day, National Night Out in both towns and other activities.
Each spring, the club sponsors the annual Vern Applegate Community Service Award and George Prutky Vocational Service Award honoring deserving residents.

Student Scholarships/Students of the Month

The club sponsors annual scholarships for high school seniors who are residents of Hamilton or Robbinsville and planning to attend college, vocational or technical school upon graduation. In addition, any graduating senior in Mercer County is eligible to apply for the club’s trade school scholarship. 
The Rotary scholarships are focused on active participation in community service and how students would use their education and experiences to give back to the community. An annual Dollars for Scholars raffle provides funds for the scholarships.
Each month during the school year, the club recognizes Students of the Month selected by the public high schools in our communities - Steinert, Nottingham, Hamilton West and Robbinsville. The students receive certificates at club meetings and tell us about their current activities and future plans.


Strike Out Hunger Phillies Game

Since 1994, the club has participated in the annual Philadelphia Phillies Strike Out Hunger program. The Phillies return half of the proceeds from tickets the club sells to a designated game, providing our club with an average of $1,000 a year for charitable causes, including an international effort to eradicate polio.
Club members, along with family and friends, get to socialize at a Phillies game and help others in the process. Members also donate tickets for non-profit groups to bring kids to the game.
Attendees are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to drop off in collection bins for Philadelphia-area food pantries.

Winter Survival Kits
Our club collects personal items and warm accessories that are packed into Winter Survival Kits each year to benefit clients served by the Rescue Mission of Trenton.
The kits are greatly appreciated by the Rescue Mission and its clients.
The Rescue Mission said, “It’s been a wonderful relationship between the organization and the club to provide (the kits) for folks who come into the shelter in the middle of winter with nothing.”


The EarlyAct program - Rotary-like clubs for elementary school students - was established in 1997 by the Rotary Club of Robbinsville Hamilton, then known as the Rotary Club of Hamilton/Washington. The first EarlyAct Club was formed at Morgan Elementary School in Hamilton and the concept became popular around the world with EarlyAct clubs being established as far away as Australia and Africa.
Through EarlyAct, students engage in character-building activities and prepare for future leadership roles. Club members learn to identify and carry out service projects that improve the quality of life in their local community and beyond.
The George E. Wilson Elementary School in Hamilton established an EarlyAct Club in the fall of 2023.

Backpacks and School Supplies/Book Donations

Before each school year, the club sponsors a collection of backpacks and school supplies for students at the George E. Wilson Elementary School in Hamilton. Club members and area residents donate the backpacks and range of supplies, which include notebooks, crayons, pencils, folders and other essentials.
The club also has used grant funds to provide the school with books to supplement its library, and members participate in a read-along program at the school.

Police Community Service Awards

The club sponsors annual Police Community Service Awards in Robbinsville and Hamilton, honoring officers selected by the chiefs of police for their work in the community.
Each year we honor police officers who help maintain a positive public image and serve as role models to the police community itself.
The award come with a donation in the recipient’s name to the officer’s respective PBA.

Adopt-a-Child, Save-a-Life

The club continues to support its first and most impactful International project - a housing and vocational training complex for endangered street children in Brazil. The club’s Adopt-a-Child, Save-a-Life project in 1996 and 1997 to support the City of Hope in Campinas, Brazil was done in partnership with the non-profit Hope Unlimited and backed by a $30,000 Rotary matching grant.
As word spread about the project, the club was offered property on a mountain in Vittoria, Brazil to establish another orphanage and trade school. For that project, the club received the largest Health, Hunger and Humanity grant ever awarded by Rotary International - nearly a half million dollars - to help create Hope Mountain.


Each October, the club partners with Robbinsville and Hamilton schools to collect socks for those in need. The hundreds of pairs of socks collected during “Socktober” are delivered to local organizations including Womanspace, Inc., the Rescue Mission of Trenton and the Salvation Army.
In 2023, The Socktober collection brought in 1,320 pairs of socks. The drive was conducted by our club in partnership with the Pond Road Middle School PTA, Sharon Elementary School PTA and Hamilton’s Reynolds Middle School.

Rotary Gazebo

To mark Rotary’s 100th year in 2005, club members raised funds to build a lakeside gazebo as a gathering space for the Robbinsville community. Since its construction, the gazebo on Lake Drive in Robbinsville has served as a popular focal point in the township, hosting a variety of events and community gatherings, from summer concerts to weddings.
In July 2021, one of sport’s most recognized trophies, the Stanley Cup, was displayed at the gazebo by Robbinsville native Ross Colton, whose team at the time, the Tampa Bay Lightning of the National Hockey League, had completed a championship-winning season. His appearance at the gazebo was part of a “Ross Colton Day” community celebration in Robbinsville.