World Polio Day is October 24th. It is a time for Rotary members all over the world to gather, recognize our progress, and get ready to eradicate polio. Eighteen million people around the world who would have died or been paralyzed are alive and walking because of the polio eradication campaign.
When we talk about Polio Plus, we know we are eradicating polio, but do we realize how many added benefits the program brings? The “Plus” is something else that is provided as part of the polio eradication campaign. I touched on a few in last week’s TRF Moment and some other examples are that it might be a hand-operated tricycle or access to water. It might be additional medical treatment, bed nets, or soap. A 2010 study estimates that vitamin A drops given to children at the same time as the polio vaccine have prevented 1.25 million deaths by decreasing susceptibility to infectious diseases. (These statistics are excerpts from The Rotarian Magazine, October 2019, story by Vanessa Glavinskas).
Please join me this Tuesday to hear from our District Polio Plus Chair, Nelson Maler, with his timely presentation on Rotary and its polio eradication efforts. This will be a singularly wonderful program to bring a friend and show them the power of our Organization.
Rotary has a growing list of public figures and celebrities who support our fight against polio, including Bill Gates, actresses Kristen Bell and Archie Panjabi; actor and wrestling superstar John Cena; supermodel Isabeli Fontana; Nobel Peace Prize laureate Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu; action-movie star Jackie Chan; actor Donald Sutherland; boxing great Manny Pacquiao; pop star Psy; golf legend Jack Nicklaus; conservationist Jane Goodall; premier violinist Itzhak Perlman, Grammy Award winners A.R. Rahman, Angelique Kidjo, and Ziggy Marley; and peace advocate Queen Noor of Jordan. These ambassadors help Rotary educate the public about the disease and the fight to end polio for good.
We are in the final stretch in this 30+ year endeavor and I am proud to be a supporting Rotarian of this worthwhile cause! This is truly an example of ordinary people accomplishing extraordinary things!
See you on Tuesday!
Yours in Rotary Service,
Michelle Corradetti, President
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