Posted by David Andrews on Oct 17, 2016

In honor of World Polio Day 2017, which is widely recognized on October 24, the Rotary Clubs of Oshawa and Oshawa-Parkwood will receive proclamations from The City of Oshawa as World Polio Day, on October 24, 2017 at the Monday, October 23, 2017 noon hour meeting of the Rotary Club of Oshawa, at the Jubilee Pavillion, it was announced today, by Ron Dick, President of the Rotary Club of Oshawa.

Oshawa Mayor John Henry (who is also a long-time member of the Oshawa Rotary Club) will present the Proclamations to Ron Dick, President of the Oshawa Rotary Club (the Mator's Rotary Club) and to Ted Morrison, President of the Oshawa-Parkwood Rotary Club.

Mayor Henry said, “I am so proud of my Rotary Club of Oshawa and also the Oshawa-Parkwood Rotary Club for their efforts in Rotary’s 32-year mission to eradicate the crippling childhood disease, polio”.

The world is on the verge of eliminating one of the most dreaded diseases of the 20th century -- poliomyelitis. During the first half of the 20th century, polio crippled over a half a million people every year. Even today, children in some developing countries continue to fall victim to the disease. But thanks in large part to Rotary International and to the 1.2 million Rotary members worldwide, including the 10 Durham Region Rotary Clubs , the disease will soon be all but a memory.

As World Polio Day draws closer, the world is 99.9% polio-free, the fight to end polio is not over and Rotary Clubs world-wide continue to raise funds to meet the challenge.

Since Rotary and its partners launched the Global Polio Eradication Initiative nearly 30 years ago, the incidence of polio has plummeted by more than 99.9 percent, from about 350,000 children paralyzed due to polio every year, and in all of 2017, only 12 have been confirmed as of Ocotber 18, 2017 : 7 in Afghanistan and 5 in Pakistan.

Oshawa Rotary President Ron Dick said, “Since 1985, Rotary members world-wide have contributed nearly US$1.6 billion to help immunize more than 2.5 billion children against polio, and we have helped secure over US$ 7.2 billion from donor governments. Coinciding with World Polio Day, Rotary is ramping up its advocacy work in the 200 countries and regions where Rotary clubs exist to encourage every national government to commit to the funding levels needed to close the gap.”

Oshawa-Parkwood Rotary President Ted Morrison said, “In many cities all over the world, October 24, 2017 has been proclaimed World Polio Day in honour of Rotary’s efforts to eradicate polio from the world. Rotarians will be gathering at city and town halls to acknowledge October 24 as World Polio Day, and to reconfirm our deep commitment to Eradicate Polio from the face of the earth. Tomorrow evening at the Oshawa Golf and Curling Club, The Region of Durham will proclaim Ocotber 24 as World Polio Day in Durham as Regional Councilor Bob Champan, on behalf of Regional Chair Roger Anderson, will be handing out proclamations to the 10 Rotary Club Presidents in Durham Region and to Rotary International District 7070 Governor Neil Phillips. Right here in our own Rotary District, in southern Ontario, Canada, flag raising ceremonies will be held in Markham, Richmond Hill, and other towns and cities in southern Ontario. And there will be a flag raising ceremony at City Hall in Toronto right in the heart of the city, the home to the 2018 Rotary International Convention at 11 am on October 24. We will also be lighting up the CN Tower, The Toronto sign in Nathan Phillips Square in downtown Toronto, and at the University of Toronto – Scarborough campus, on October 24, in red, white, and yellow , the colours of the End Polio Now campaign, to raise awareness to our cause and efforts in eradicating this disease. ”

We encourage everyone to join us on October 24, 2017 for our fifth annual World Polio Day event. We’ll be streaming live , a joint effort of Rotary and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, from Gates Foundation headquarters in Seattle, Washington to bring together more than 50,000 viewers around the world so tune in at 5:30 p.m. Eastern Time to watch a global status update on the fight to end polio and take part in the conversation. Guests will include Global Polio Eradication Initiative partners, celebrity ambassadors, polio survivors, and others. Watch at , “ Oshawa President Ron Dick added.



A highly infectious disease, polio causes paralysis and is sometimes fatal. As there is no cure, the best protection is prevention. For as little as US 60 cents worth of vaccine, a child can be protected against this crippling disease for life. After the successful engagement of over 200 countries and 20 million volunteers, polio could be the first human disease of the 21st century to be eradicated.

The Global Polio Eradication Initiative is spearheaded by the World Health Organization, Rotary International, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). It includes the support of governments and other private sector donors.

Rotary’s main responsibilities are fundraising, advocacy, and volunteer recruitment. Since 1995, the advocacy efforts of Rotary and its partners have helped raise more than $8 billion from donor governments. And Rotary clubs also provide on the ground help in polio-affected communities.

Early in 2016, two members of the Rotary Club of Oshawa-Parkwood and a spouse traveled to India, with their own money, and participated in a 4-day National Immunization Day (NID) program. They were three of the 2.3 million vaccinators that went to 190 million homes and 170 million children were immunized in one day. “ That is Rotarians Making a Difference at its finest moment,” President Morrison said.

It is so important to generate the funds needed to End Polio Now. To fail is to invite a polio resurgence that would condemn millions of children to lifelong paralysis in the years ahead. The bottom line is this: As long as polio threatens even one child anywhere in the world, all children – wherever they live – remain at risk”, said Mr. Michael Bell, Chairman of Rotary International District 7070’s (southern Ontario) Rotary Foundation .

The main objective of Rotary International is service, in the community and throughout the world. As volunteers, Rotarians build goodwill and peace, provide humanitarian service, and encourage high ethical standards in all vocations.


Rotary invites the public to support the polio eradication initiative by visiting , , and be sure to visit the and the website for more information about the two Oshawa Rotary Clubs.