The Rotary Club of Hanalei Bay on Saturday sponsored a mini-golf tournament to raise funds for polio prevention. It raised over $1,000 to help toward the $3.3 billion needed to completely wipe out any signs of it on the planet.
That is, as they say, a drop in the bucket. But while money is needed, there’s something even more important. Let’s get right to the heart of the matter: People caring enough to do something. And leave no doubt, Rotary clubs worldwide are doing something, starting right here with The Rotary Club of Hanalei Bay.
Mark Daniel Maloney, president, Rotary International, 2019-2020, had this to say:
We have come a long way since we started PolioPlus in 1985, but we still have work to do, and I need your help in empowering Rotarians in your club to join the fight.
Today, Oct. 24, is World Polio Day. Rotary International’s World Polio Day Online Global Update will be streamed on Facebook in multiple time zones and languages around the world. The broadcast will be at noon, CT. This year’s program will highlight the heroes of polio eradication, with stories from polio-endemic and recently impacted areas.
Following its premiere, the program video will be available indefinitely on Rotary International and our website: endpol.io/wpd.
World Polio Day is an annual opportunity for Rotary members to rally the world around the fight to eradicate the disease forever. This year’s program will highlight the heroes of polio eradication, with stories from areas that have recently been affected and areas where polio is still endemic.
Before we go further, we should explain what polio is. Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: “Polio, or poliomyelitis, is a crippling and potentially deadly infectious disease. It is caused by the poliovirus. The virus spreads from person to person and can invade an infected person’s brain and spinal cord, causing paralysis.”
Today, while polio is mostly wiped out, the poliovirus still affects children and adults in Asia and Africa.
Polio vaccine protects children by preparing their bodies to fight the polio virus. Almost all children (99 children out of 100) who get all the recommended doses of vaccine are protected from polio.
There are two types of vaccine that can prevent polio: inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) and oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV). Only IPV has been used in the United States since 2000. OPV is still used throughout much of the world, per the CDC.
This year’s program, sponsored by UNICEF USA and the Bill &Melinda Gates Foundation, features TV presenter and former Paralympian Ade Adepitan, supermodel Isabeli Fontana, science educator Bill Nye, and actress Archie Panjabi. Rotary’s partners at the World Health Organization and UNICEF will provide updates on the latest progress toward a polio-free world.
Don’t think that polio doesn’t affect us. Family members, even people who live on Kauai, have battled polio. Some lost that battle.
“We don’t see polio here, but it can easily be here if we don’t keep up the fight and get to zero,” wrote Rick Courson,
Rotary District 5000 PolioPlus chair. “So, Rotary, knock polio off the face of our Earth and donate to PolioPlus. Together, we can wipe out polio.”
Those on Oahu can join the Rotar-oke fun at the Nocturna Lounge at Restaurant Row from 4:40 to 9 tonight. On Kauai, the Rotary Club of Hanalei Bay will be sure your donation helps win this war on polio.