The Rotary Foundation of the United Kingdom receives gift of £1.25 million from accomplished pianist and teacher

Helen Ruddock of Suffolk, England, promoted the goals and values of Rotary through her leadership, service, and integrity.

Helen Ruddock of Suffolk, England bequeathed a generous donation of £1.25 million to The Rotary Foundation. Having passed away in 2015 at the age of 96, and although not a Rotarian herself, Mrs Ruddock had a passion for improving the lives of others.

Her introduction to Rotary and The Rotary Foundation was made by a close friend, who was a member of the Rotary Club of Halstead for a number of years.

Complying with Mrs Ruddock's wishes, the spendable earnings from her gift, known as the Helen Ruddock Foundation Endowed Fund, will exclusively fund charitable service projects in the area of water and sanitation to improve the provision of clean water and hygiene practices in communities across Africa through the Rotary Global Grants programme.

Despite not being a member of Rotary, Mrs. Ruddock exhibited many of the values of Rotary throughout her life with her involvement in her local community and by devoting her time and talents to help others.

Music was central to her life and for many years she split her time between tending the farm her parent's had owned and teaching piano, after being educated at institutions including the Royal College of Music.

She married her beloved husband Ted in 1956 and after his death in 1970 she went on to become a highly respected piano teacher, sharing her knowledge at South Lee School in Bury St. Edmunds, Fairstead House School in Newmarket and Riverwalk School, where she worked with children with severe learning difficulties.

Renowned for her ability to inspire her pupil's to get the best out of themselves, a number of those she taught went on to study at the most prestigious universities and music colleges, with many more holding fond memories of her as a teacher.

The Rotary Foundation this year celebrates its centennial anniversary. Over the last 100 years, the Foundation has funded over $3 billion worth of projects in Rotary's Six Areas of Focus in communities around the world.

Alison Budge from Ashtons Legal, who provided legal advice to Mrs Ruddock said: "We are seeing more and more clients leaving money to good causes in their Wills, and know how much these charities rely on legacy gifts. I knew Helen for many years both as a friend and a client and I greatly appreciated her lively character and indefatigable spirit. Helen was very explicit in her wishes and it was a pleasure assisting her in setting up the Helen Ruddock Foundation Endowed Fund."



#1   Submitted By Annemarie Mostert on 18-Apr-2017 03:28 pm

 A gift of LOVE and no better investment than with The Rotary Foundation.

#2   Submitted By S.N. Agrawal on 18-Apr-2017 10:44 pm

Oh, wonderful. The big donation by a non Rotarian shows the credibality of our organization. I am sure, her donation would benefit millions in Africa.

#3   Submitted By Otaniyen Igbinovia on 19-Apr-2017 03:43 am

a peculiar expression of self sacrificing gesture.   Very touching.  Indeed, there is more happiness in giving that there is in receiving.

#4   Submitted By Bettie Muliisa on 19-Apr-2017 08:39 am

This is a noteworthy donation from a non rotarian to be recognised by all rotarians as we serve humanity


#5   Submitted By Elisabeth Yardley on 19-Apr-2017 11:20 am

Wonderful! Just goes to show how important it is to be nice and polite to everyone!


#6   Submitted By Retselisitsoe V... on 9-May-2017 08:52 am

Serving humanity is every Rotarian's commitment with support from the world community and receiving such a donation from a non Rotarian, is a welcome contribution towards enhancing the noble act of service above self.

#7   Submitted By Alan Hollands on 12-May-2017 01:54 pm

I was privileged to be asked to meet with Helen and to discuss the possible terms of her gift to The Rotary Foundation.  She was very clear in her wish that the income from her legacy should be used to provide safe water and sanitation in Africa.  I am very pleased to see that this has come to such a satisfactory conclusion and to record my thanks for the generosity of Helen Ruddock

#8   Submitted By Benu Karki on 15-May-2017 07:03 am

Many thanks to her. God bless her with all the happiness in her life. There are many people or families like her in this world. I wish they learn from her and contribute their kindness to the humanity in the same way.


#9   Submitted By Eamonn O'Raghallaigh on 15-May-2017 09:16 am

It is wonderful to see a non-Rotarian so committed to the ideals of Rotary.  I am sure the investment in safe water and sanitation will have a lasting impact on African continent.  A clear example of Service above Self.

#10   Submitted By Francis Ugorji on 17-May-2017 01:42 am

Worthy of emulation, a non Rotarian making such a donation? Highly committed to the ideals of Rotary. Am impressed by her genourisity. 

#11   Submitted By Mokhlesur Rahman on 21-May-2017 03:34 pm

Really it is a inspirational for any one like a non rotarian contributing for a noble cause. Rotarians should take a motivational step to the society to gear up the rotary object the service above self.

#12   Submitted By Alexander Osei ... on 27-May-2017 02:57 am

Congratulation Mrs Ruddock for kind gesture towards humanity, even though you are not a Rotarian but contributing to the cause of this noble association.

#13   Submitted By Tatenda Manyuchi on 29-May-2017 03:41 pm

This is amazing, Mrs Ruddock has done so much already through this donation. Making a difference

#14   Submitted By Joseph Owusu Yeboah on 1-Jun-2017 03:30 pm

Great and wonderful. A heart that has feeling for the poor and the needy. This donation is going to make difference in the life of many in some poor communities. May God have mercy on her and give her a peaceful rest.

#15   Submitted By Mithat Sucuoglu on 5-Jun-2017 01:02 pm

I am overwhelmed by the donation of Mrs Ruddock. Her donation as a non Rotarian will change lives and is  a big contribution of Service above Self. This noble act of her shows  the confindence  and credibility of our Rotary Foundation.

#16   Submitted By Daliborka Bradic on 13-Jun-2017 09:14 am

Thank you Helen :)