Rotary seeks to end polio


Like chapters across the globe, the Rotary Club of Waynesboro is focused on working to eradicate polio. 

Polio, or poliomyelitis, is a paralyzing and potentially deadly infectious disease that most commonly affects children under the age of 5. The virus spreads from person to person, typically through contaminated water. It can then attack the nervous system. But it can be eradicated.

Since their first project to vaccinate children in the Philippines in 1979, and as a founding partner of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988, Rotary helped reduce polio cases by 99.9 percent.  Wild poliovirus cases have decreased since 1988, from an estimated 350 000 cases in more than 125 endemic countries then, to 6 reported cases in 2021. 

Rotary members have contributed more than $2.1 billion and countless volunteer hours to protect nearly 3 billion children in 122 countries from this paralyzing disease. Rotary’s advocacy efforts played a role in decisions by governments to contribute more than $10 billion to the effort. 

Today, polio remains endemic only in Afghanistan and Pakistan. But it’s crucial to continue working to keep other countries polio-free. If all eradication efforts stopped today, within 10 years polio could paralyze as many as 200,000 children each year.

October 24th every year is World Polio Day.  Communities, civil society, governments, partners and Rotary Clubs around the world organize events to mark the occasion and draw attention to the opportunity to rid the world of an infectious disease once and for all. 

Each year during this week the Rotary Club of Waynesboro, in addition to it’s own contributions, invites everyone in our local community to join in contributing what you can to help eradicate this disease. 

If able, make polio donations to the “Rotary Club of Waynesboro Foundation” with the note “End Polio Now” at PO Box 523, Waynesboro PA 17268, or contact the club at to make other arrangements.  For more on the Rotary Club of Waynesboro, visit

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