Rotary Clubs worldwide to light up buildings and landmarks with end polio now message | SierraSun.com

Rotary Clubs worldwide to light up buildings and landmarks with end polio now message

Special to the Sun

TRUCKEE, Calif. andamp;#8212; Buildings and landmarks worldwide will carry Rotaryandamp;#8217;s End Polio Now message during the week of Feb. 23, the humanitarian service organizationandamp;#8217;s 106th anniversary, declaring Rotaryandamp;#8217;s pledge to rid the world of this crippling childhood disease.Polio eradication has been Rotaryandamp;#8217;s top priority for more than two decades. The international humanitarian service organization is a spearheading partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, along with the World Health Organization, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and UNICEF.Rotary has pledged to raise $200 million (U.S.) to match $355 million in challenge grants from the Bill andamp; Melinda Gates Foundation. The entire $555 million will be spent in support of eradication activities.The Truckee Sunrise Rotary Club has been part of this effort from its beginning, consistently exceeding its fund raising goals and dispatching members overseas to assist the effort.Great progress has been made: The number of cases of polio infection has plunged from about 350,000 in 1988 to fewer than 2,000 in 2009. More than two billion children have been immunized in 122 countries, preventing five million cases of paralysis and 250,000 pediatric deaths.Rotary Club members worldwide have contributed more than $900 million and countless volunteer hours to the effort and are now working aggressively to raise the $200 million needed to match the Gates Foundation grants. The money is needed to ensure the progress made over more than two decades will continue. To learn more about polio eradication, including how to participate in this historic effort, visit http://www.rotary.org/endpolio today.

Rotary International is the worldandamp;#8217;s first and one of the largest nonprofit humanitarian service organizations. It is comprised of 1.2 million business and professional leaders in 200 countries and geographical regions. Rotary members initiate community projects that address many of todayandamp;#8217;s most critical issues such as violence, AIDS, hunger, the environment and health care.The Truckee Sunrise Rotary Club welcomes those wanting to join other Rotarians to serve their community.Membership is open to those holding or retired from a professional, proprietary, executive, or managerial position; who agree to meet the clubandamp;#8217;s participation expectations; and are committed to high standards of integrity, fairness, tolerance and humanitarianism. Visit http://www.TruckeeSunriseRotary.org and http://www.TruckeeChiliCookoff.org.andamp;#8212; Submitted to aedgett@sierrasun.com