Rotarians in Plymouth are gearing up to up their awareness campaign towards ending Polio throughout the world for World Polio Day looms on October 28.
With the help of Plymouth Albion, Rotarians attended the home game against the Cornish Pirates and displayed the This Close to Ending Polio posters featuring local personalities. Face of Plymouth winners Lawrence Barnes and Emma Fellows joined Rotarians in spreading the message of Rotary’s work towards ending Polio to the supporters present at the game.
Since 1985, eradicating polio has been Rotary’s top priority. Largely through the efforts of Rotarians and the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, the campaign is “this close” to its goal. Polio cases worldwide decreased by more than 40 percent during the first eight months of 2011, compared with the same period in 2010. And India – one of the four countries where the virus remains endemic (the others are Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Pakistan) – reported only one case during that time.
As of September, Rotarians around the world have raised US$190 million toward Rotary’s US$200 Million Challenge to match $355 million in grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Darren Hands of the Rotary Club of Plympton said: “Though the polio eradication campaign has made great progress, challenges remain. Seeing the job through to the finish will require redoubled effort and commitment but local Rotarians are determined to do their bit and see this through.”