Atlanta Rotary takes a stand against polio
Atlanta Area Rotary Club will mark historic progress toward a polio-free world, while urging community support to end the paralyzing disease. Rotary clubs throughout the world are recognizing World Polio Day on October 24.
Since Rotary and its partners launched the Global Polio Eradication Initiative 30 years ago, the incidence of polio has plummeted by more than 99.9 percent, from about 350,000 cases a year to just 14 cases in 2017. To sustain this progress, and protect all children from polio, Rotary has committed to raising $50 million per year over the next two years in support of global polio eradication efforts.
According to Porter, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will match Rotary’s commitment 2:1. Without full funding and political commitment, this paralyzing disease could return to previously polio-free countries, putting children everywhere at risk.
Porter also stated that polio is just a “plane-ride away.” The virus can travel around the world and be a real problem right here in Atlanta quite easily now due to our globe-trotting citizens.
“We don’t just want to keep polio out of Atlanta, but out of the world,” she said. “It takes three years with no new cases before a country is declared polio-free. We have just three countries that need to conquer this disease. Look for the “iron lung” in our Christmas parade and realize the freedom we have to just draw our next breath.”
Rotary brings together a global network of volunteer leaders dedicated to tackling the world’s most pressing humanitarian challenges. Rotary connects 1.2 million members of more than 35,000 Rotary clubs in over 200 countries and geographical areas. Their work improves lives at both the local and international levels, from helping families in need in their own communities to working toward a polio-free world. Visit endpolio.org for more about Rotary and its efforts to eradicate polio.
For more information about the Atlanta Area Rotary club, visit the web site (Atlanta, Texas, area rotary) or search for them on facebook @ Atlanta Area Rotary.