Aug 262020

It’s official — history has again been made with confirmation that you and me and all have helped kick wild Polio out of Africa.

For four years there has not been a single wild Polio case in the 47 countries of the Africa region.

So thank you to everyone who has helped Rotary groups plant purple crocus bulbs, bought the crocus charity pins; admired purple lit buildings and attended fundraising events.

In the region of £25,000 has been raised each year in this Rotary district and our thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation who has made that £75,000 going to vaccinating children, providing health monitoring and control.

Those resources have also now been used to combat the corona virus emergency there too.

The battle against polio can be won . . . . .

Some Facts & Figures

  • On August 25, the WHO (World Health Organisation) African region was officially certified free of wild poliovirus. This certification will come four years after Nigeria – the last polio-endemic country in Africa – recorded its final case of wild polio.
  • This milestone is an incredible public health achievement for Rotary members, the African region, millions of health workers, and our Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) partners, and a huge step forward on the road to global polio eradication.
  • Rotary members have played an invaluable role in the effort to rid the African region of wild polio. We should be proud of all the hard work that we’ve done to eliminate the wild poliovirus in nearly every country in the world.
  • By raising funds for polio eradication, advocating with world governments and national and local leaders, holding events and fundraisers for World Polio Day, and raising awareness, Rotarians in the African region and around the world have made an indelible impact in the fight to eradicate polio.
    • There are Rotary clubs in all 47 countries in the African region, and the region is home to almost 32,000 Rotary members in nearly 1400 Rotary clubs.
    • Rotary and its members have contributed nearly US$890 million to eliminate polio in the African region.
  • The success of African countries, Rotary members, and partners in eliminating the wild poliovirus throughout the region is proof that polio eradication is possible.
  • Our expected victory over wild poliovirus in the African region represents incredible progress, but as long as polio exists anywhere, it remains a threat everywhere.
  • To overcome the remaining hurdles to eradication, it is critical that Rotary members remain committed to polio eradication and continue raising $50 million a year so we can keep children protected in Africa and eliminate the wild poliovirus in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
  • With continued support from Rotary, donors, country governments and GPEI partners we are confident that we can beat polio for good.

Brian Portway (Club President)

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