The Eighth Annual End Polio Now Walk was sponsored this year by the Rotary clubs of the Sauk Valley Area: Dixon, Rock Falls, Rotaract of Sauk Valley College, Sterling Noon, and Walnut.Twenty-four Rotarians and guests braved the cold morning on October 7th to walk the Hennepin Canal in an awareness of the need to eradicate polio as a disease from our world. Since 1988 Rotary has been involved in the eradication of polio along with WHO, Gates Foundation, and other entities. In that year over 250,000 persons annually worldwide would be diagnosed with polio and for many it was a death sentence.Today in 2023 only a worldwide total of 10 cases of wild polio virus in Afghanistan and Pakistan have been recorded, so the reduction in cases has been 99.99% successful. But it is these very last cases that need to be stamped out to eradicate polio fully as a disease. We are truly that close!
Rotarians are asked to donate to the Rotary Foundation program of Polio Plus which is the source of Rotary funding the worldwide effort. Visiting Rotarians donated a total of $200 on the day of the walk to end polio. All sponsoring club donations to Polio Plus from July 1 through the end of October were encouraged to support the eradication effort which culminates on World Polio Day on October 24. At this time the total donation of Rock Falls Rotary members has been reported as $1,578.00 which will be tripled by the Gates Foundation matching monies for a total of $4,734. The other club donations have not yet been submitted to the total effort of the 8th Annual End Polio Now Walk.