Rotary members in Cincinnati are among millions reaching out on World Polio Day to raise awareness, funds and support to end polio – a vaccine preventable disease that still threatens children in parts of the world today.
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 22 cases in 2017. To sustain this progress, and protect all children from polio, Rotary has committed to raising US$50 million per year in support of global polio eradication efforts. 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.
Rotary has contributed more than US$1.8 billion to ending polio since 1985, including those from the Rotary Club of Cincinnati members.
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.