Members of Gordano Breakfast Rotary and Portishead Rotary Clubs have arranged for the tower of St. Peter's Church to be lit in a purple light to mark World Polio Day (24th October). The colour is not so obvious to the naked eye but if you take a photograph on your phone... the colour miraculously appears! The colour purple is chosen because when a child receives their life-saving polio drops on mass polio immunisation days, their little finger is painted with a purple dye so it is clear they have received their polio vaccine.
Rotary members throughout the world are taking action 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.
When Rotary and its partners launched the Global Polio Eradication Initiative in 1988, there were 350,000 cases of polio in 125 countries every year. We’ve made great progress against the disease since then. Today, polio cases have been reduced by 99.9 per cent, and just two countries continue to report cases of wild poliovirus: Afghanistan and Pakistan. We remain committed to END POLIO NOW!
With polio nearly eradicated, Rotary and its partners must sustain this progress and continue to reach every child with the polio vaccine. Without full funding and political commitment, this paralyzing disease could return to polio-free countries, putting children everywhere at risk. Rotary (globally) has committed to raising US$50 million each year to support global polio eradication efforts. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged to match that 2-to-1, for a total yearly contribution of $150 million.