International Services Committee  






The purpose of ShelterBox USA, Inc. is to provide victims of disaster with shelter, by supporting the efforts of the ShelterBox Trust.

The function of ShelterBox USA, Inc. is, within the USA, to raise the money that provides the shelter for disaster victims.

ShelterBox is a grassroots Rotary club project which has rapidly grown to an international level.

The ShelterBox project was conceived and developed by Tom Henderson, a member of the Rotary Club of Helston-Lizard, Cornwall District, in Great Britain as their Millennium Service Project. Struck with the urgent world-wide need for a self-contained emergency shelter unit when disaster occurs, Tom designed a tent, researched suppliers and, through trial and error, developed the ShelterBox. The international relief agency Feed the Children, has called Tom's ShelterBox ‘the best disaster relief tool they have seen in their 20 years of experience'. Working primarily through UK Rotary clubs, Tom and his Rotary club has succeeded in exposing the ShelterBox project to over 25 million Brits and, as a result, distributed provided shelter for approximately one-third of a million people in the last six years.

In March, 2002, Tom approached the newly formed Rotary Club of Lakewood Ranch (near Sarasota, FL) to become the primary Rotary administrator for the ShelterBox program in the United State, known as ShelterBox USA. This commitment involves promoting ShelterBox not only through the established US Rotary club network but to other community groups, corporate groups and individuals, as well. ShelterBox USA became a non profit 501(C)(3) organization, with a Board of Directors, in 2005.

As a result of exhibiting at the 2003 Rotary International Conference, Shelter Box USA was responsible for initiating two other national affiliates: Shelter Box Down Under (in Australia) and Shelter-Box Canada. ShelterBox Japan is the newest global partner.