Posted on Nov 02, 2019
Polio, hasn't been part of the North American lexicon for several decades.  We scarce give Polio a thought and daresay, most of the population have never heard the word.  Polio has been eradicated from the western world, but it lingers still in faraway places like Pakistan, Afghanistan and is a threat in India, Philippines, Nigeria to name a few.
 
Why do we still talk about this topic?  Polio is a plane ride away.  It can strike again because many westerners have given up on any vaccinations.  But it doesn't have to be a threat if Rotarians and partners World Health Organization, UINICEF and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation continue to support country wide vaccination programmes.  Vaccinators must seek out every child under 5 and administer vaccine.  Children are scattered in remote enclaves and nomadic tribes where airplanes, jeeps and motorcycles cannot reach.  This effort is made very difficult because some children are located in war zones....and some don't wish to be found and are hidden away. 
 
Countries undertake National Immunization Days, NID's, to attempt to blanket everyone.  Just for scale, imagine 1.55 million vaccinators mobilized in India on any NID.  Imagine 160-170 million children.  These are staggering to one's imagination.
 
And of course it all takes money, hence Rotary keeps fighting until we can announce a Polio Free world.
 
Our Past President Barbara Duggan went on such a vaccination team earlier this year.  She brought us these incredible numbers and a heart touching story of her time on the front lines administering vaccine.  She also told of how subsequent teams providing rubella vaccine and mosquito nets are using the exact Rotary distribution model.  Rotary has forged a breakthrough process for future mass vaccination initiatives, and it is of enormous importance.  She is proud of what Rotary has done. Barb's Presentation...
 
Waiting for new limbs at the Jaipur Limb factory …There are several such facilities all over the world.The limbs are made of basic pvc piping and moulded into fully operational legs, feet, hands etc
Barbara at one of the several schools they visited. This one received toilets and sinks provided by the Rotary Foundation in partnership with two local Rotary clubs. 
Young ladies at a well in an impoverished village. A few of the Rotarians ( in the background)  trying  to bring the water up from the well…and not very successfully.  The weight of the water on the girls’ heads is astounding. 
One of many young ladies and men at St Stephens hospital who are receiving surgery to correct their polio.
 
We enjoyed a nice lunch at the Hilton today, along with our friends Gilles and Lois Bouchard, Ken and Pearl Hsieh and visiting Rotarian Scott Campbell.  As this is the last Wed of October we also celebrated October birthdays for Cindy, Hugo, Suna and Cindy.  Captain Canada, aka James Kao acknowledged Halloween with his costume and summarily collected many happy dollars today. Check out our fashion models Secretary Hugo and President Henry.
 
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