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Garza County News

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Post Rotary Club Does Its Part to Eradicate Polio

Mayor Harp Declares World Polio Week in Post

Published Oct. 19, 2011 @ 6:29 p.m.

“If we all have the fortitude to see this effort through to the end, then we will eradicate polio.” — Bill Gates, co chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Post Rotary Club and its members have long been involved in the eradication of Polio. Beginning in 1958 through a government sponsored program, Rotarian Bob Collier, working with a team of 2 local doctors and 2 nurses, began the vaccination process in Garza County.  Sugar cubes with a dropper of polio vaccine was administered to local children for two Sunday afternoons at the Post School cafeteria.  It will be in Mr. Bob Colliers honor that Rotarians in the Post Club of District 5730 financially contribute to what we all believe to be the final thrust to totally eradicate this disease from the world.  In addition to this financial contribution, Post Mayor Thressa Harp has issued a proclamation declaring October 24 - 28, 2011 to be World Polio Week in Post, TX.  An additional fundraiser is also scheduled for later this year to raise funds and public awareness. 

Since 1988, Rotary International and its partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) — the World Health Organization, UNICEF, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — have worked to wipe polio from the face of the earth. A volunteer service organization of 1.2 million men and women, Rotary began immunizing children against polio in 1985 and became a spearheading partner in the GPEI three years later.

Rotary’s main responsibilities are fundraising, advocacy, and volunteer recruitment. To date, Rotary has contributed more than $900 million to the polio eradication effort.

With over 33,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas, Rotary is able to reach out to national governments worldwide to generate crucial financial and technical support for polio eradication. Since 1995, the advocacy efforts of Rotary and its partners have helped raise more than $8 billion from donor governments.

Rotary clubs also provide “sweat equity” on the ground in polio-affected communities, which helps ensure that leaders at all levels remain focused on the eradication goal. Rotary club members have volunteered their time and personal resources to reach more than two billion children in 122 countries with the oral polio vaccine.

Thanks to Rotary and its partners, the world has seen polio cases plummet by more than 99 percent, preventing five million instances of child paralysis and 250,000 deaths. When Rotary began its eradication work, polio infected more than 350,000 children annually. In 2009, fewer than 1,700 cases were reported worldwide.

But the polio cases represented by that final 1 percent are the most difficult and expensive to prevent. Challenges include geographic isolation, worker fatigue, armed conflict, and cultural barriers.

That’s why it’s so important to generate the funding needed to End Polio Now. To fail is to invite a polio resurgence that would condemn millions of children to lifelong paralysis in the years ahead.

The bottom line is this: As long as polio threatens even one child anywhere in the world, all children — wherever they live — remain at risk.

City of Post, Texas

WHEREAS, Rotary International, founded on February 23, 1905 in Chicago, Illinois USA, is the world’s first and one of the largest non-profit service organizations; and
WHEREAS, there are over 1.2 million Rotary club members comprised of professional and business leaders in over 33,000 clubs in 200 countries and geographic areas; and
WHEREAS, the Rotary motto “Service Above Self” inspires members to provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards, and promote good will and peace in the world; and
WHEREAS, Rotary in 1985 launched PolioPlus and spearheaded the Global Polio Eradication Initiative with the World Health Organization, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and UNICEF to immunize the children of the world against polio; and
WHEREAS, polio cases have dropped by 99 percent since 1988 and the world stands on the threshold of eradicating the disease; and
WHEREAS, To date, Rotary has contributed more than US$1 billion and countless volunteer hours to the protection of more than two billion children in 122 countries; and
WHEREAS, Rotary is currently working to raise an additional $200 million toward a $355 million challenge grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; and
WHEREAS, These efforts are providing much needed operational support, medical personnel, laboratory equipment and educational materials for health workers and parents; and
WHERES, In addition, Rotary has played a major role in decisions by donor governments to contribute $8 billion to the effort; and  
WHEREAS,  Rotary club members in  clubs throughout the great state of Texas sponsoring service projects to address such critical issues as poverty, health, hunger, illiteracy, and the environment in their local communities, and abroad.
Therefore, I, Thressa Harp, Mayor of City of Post, Texas, do hereby proclaim October 24 - 28, 2011 as World Polio Week in Post, Texas, and encourage all citizens to join myself and Rotary International in the fight for a polio-free world.

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