TRAIN RIDE TO END POLIO
WHO: Rotary Club of Beecroft members, Mark and Dave Anderson
WHEN: All day, Friday 23 October 2020
WHERE: Sydney metropolitan train network – 189 stations
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Mark and Dave will begin in Sydney’s South, at Cronulla train station at 4.30am and will end their journey at Tallawong in Sydney’s North at 10.00pm.
Adhering to social distancing measures, Rotary Clubs in Brisbane, Perth, Auckland and Wellington will emulate the activity and participate in train rides to fundraise and generate awareness for World Polio Day in their own cities.
Poliomyelitis (Polio) is a highly infectious disease that most commonly affects children under the age of 5. The virus is spread person to person, typically through contaminated water and can attack the nervous system, and lead to paralysis. Although there is no cure, there is a safe and effective vaccine.
Polio affects mostly children under 5 years of age. When Rotary started the immunisation campaign in 1985, over 350,000 children were affected by the virus each year in 125 countries. In 2020, there have been fewer than 140 cases of wild polio in just two countries. 19 million people who would have otherwise been paralyzed are walking because of the Rotary END POLIO NOW campaign.
Money raised will go directly to the Rotary END POLIO NOW campaign fund to support the transport and materials needed in the fight against polio.
Australians can get involved in this unique fundraising initiative by donating to this initiative.
In August, as a result of a decades-long effort led by Rotary, partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, and world governments, the World Health Organisation’s African region was officially certified free of wild poliovirus. This certification came four years after Nigeria – the last polio-endemic country in Africa – recorded its final case of wild polio and marks a major step toward global eradication of the wild poliovirus.
“Despite this accomplishment, challenges remain. There are still pockets of children who aren’t getting the polio vaccine, leading to outbreaks and it’s critical that every child is reached with vaccines. This is especially important as immunisation campaigns, which were paused to help control the spread of COVID-19, resume in countries around the world,” Mark said.
“No child should have to suffer from the crippling effects of polio when it is totally preventable. If we stop our efforts, polio will return with a vengeance to places where today’s children do not even know what polio is.”
Media interview and photo opportunities will be available throughout the day.
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.