Rotary Club continues efforts to eradicate life-threatening illness


TAYLOR COUNTY—With World Polio Day right around the corner, the Rotary Club of Grafton has set its sights on education and fundraising efforts for the cause.
Typically, Rotarians get the students of Taylor County Middle School in on the fun, with their annual Penny Wars, and all money collected is used to help provide crucial Polio vaccinations around the world.
“On Saturday, October 24, Rotarians around the world will be observing World Polio Day,” explained Rotarian Ed Westfall. “It is a day to celebrate the progress made and to raise awareness, support and funds to continue the efforts to rid the word of polio.”
He added, “For if it is not eradicated, it could return to polio-free countries, putting children everywhere at risk.”
Because of the current pandemic, the Rotary Club of Grafton was forced to come up with some different ideas to raise funds for the annual campaign.
“This year, we had to think outside of the box when it came to our fundraising efforts,” said Westfall. “When we were trying to come up with ideas that could be done while socially distancing, a couple of ideas were voiced.”
This year, in lieu of their annual Penny Wars Against Polio, the Rotary Club of Grafton will be hosting a walk and money collections along roadways.
Get ready as your favorite Rotarians lace up their sneakers and get ready for a fun event, that has a great purpose, during the first ever Walkathon to End Polio, set to take place at McKinney Field on Saturday, October 24, from 8:00 a.m until 2:00 p.m.
“Individuals are asked to sponsor a Rotarian as they walk to eradicate Polio,” Westfall noted. “Folks can also help us on our quest by helping us fill our buckets during our End Polio Now Traffic Stops. Please make a donation to save children around the world from a crippling and life-threatening disease.”
Keep an eye out for Rotarians on Lincoln and Beech Street, on Saturday to make your donations.
He revealed that every dollar contributed will be matched with two dollars from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Although the United States has been polio-free since 1979, as recently as 1988, there were more than 350,000 cases of the incurable disease in 125 countries. This paralyzing and sometimes deadly disease still threatens the lives of children in parts of the world.
To help provide life-saving vaccinations, over $2.1 billion dollars have been raised by Rotarians and their partners through the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. That money has been used to provide vaccines for more than 2.5 billion children in 122 countries.
“Please help us continue our efforts to end this life-threatening disease,” imparted Westfall. “We would appreciate all the support we can get!”

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