August 2019 End Polio Now website
*In addition to the cases of wild polio virus listed above, there have been 52 cases of circulating vaccine derived polio cases in 2019. Please go to http://www.polioeradication.org/ for the latest details regarding case counts and progress.
The polio eradication program has experienced both progress and challenges in 2019. On 21 August 2019, Nigeria will mark three years without any new cases of wild poliovirus. As the last polio-endemic country in Africa, Nigeria’s success against wild polio will open the door for the entire African region to be certified free of wild poliovirus. Following the Nigeria three-year mark, the Africa Regional Certification Commission (ARCC) will finalize its evaluation process of the data to confirm this progress. If the data confirms this progress, the entire African region could be certified WPV-free by mid-2020.
Pakistan and Afghanistan have experienced more cases due to issues including security and access challenges. Both governments and polio eradication partners are working to critically analyze their programs and carrying out their national polio emergency plans, which use data to identify and execute area-specific solutions.
New infrastructure, resources and coordination mechanisms, such as a planned regional hub in Amman, Jordan, are helping to enhance operational management and to provide technical support to endemic countries like Pakistan and Afghanistan. Rotarians remain an active part of these efforts and are working to enhance government accountability and create awareness and support in target communities through coordinated social mobilization activities.
Thanks to the support of polio volunteers throughout the world we were able to surpass our fundraising goal for 2018-19. In the month of June, the PolioPlus Fund received over $15 million in cash, District Designated Fund allocations and World Fund Match.
*For specific club or district fundraising information, please contact Clare Monroe in PolioPlus at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our fundraising goal for 2019-20 is to raise $50 million for polio through cash, DDF and World Fund match. Districts are encouraged to give 20% or more of their DDF to PolioPlus. In addition, the Trustees agreed to match every $1 of DDF contributed with $1 from the World Fund beginning this Rotary year. Rotary Clubs are encouraged to give $1,500 or more to PolioPlus.
- An email to 2019-20 District Governors and District Rotary Foundation Chairs will be sent to encourage DDF contributions.
- A separate communication will be sent to Rotary Clubs encouraging them to set polio fundraising goals and informing them the End Polio Now Countdown to History Campaign Committee and the End Polio Now Coordinators are available to help with their polio fundraising.
Inclusion of polio eradication within the G20 summit leader’s statement. At their summit in Japan, G20 leaders affirmed commitment to polio eradication, stating ““We reaffirm our commitment to eradicate polio as well as to end the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria and look forward to the success of the sixth replenishment of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria.” Rotary and partners advocated with G20 leaders to affirm their commitment in the lead-up to the summit, and will continue to work to ensure a robust statement of commitment is included in the statement that will be issued by G20 health ministers when they meet in October of this year. Full GPEI story.
New Zealand commits funding for outbreak response in Papua New Guinea. New Zealand pledged to provide up to NZD 10 million in funding for immunization efforts in Papua New Guinea during the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit held in Papua New Guinea in November 2018. NZD 2 million of these funds has been approved to support the response to the outbreak of vaccine-derived poliovirus in Papua New Guinea. Full story.
Parliamentary Reception and Early Day Motion continues momentum to End Polio in the United Kingdom. On 1 and 2 July, representatives of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative participated in meetings with British officials to encourage the United Kingdom’s continued commitment to the global polio eradication initiative. This included a panel discussion at a parliamentary reception held on 2 July, and the introduction of an Early Day Motion (EDM) encouraging the United Kingdom’s continued support for polio eradication. Rotary clubs throughout the United Kingdom are writing to their Members of Parliament to raise awareness and encourage them to sign on to the Early Day Motion.
We are continuing to create and publish content that highlights our progress and reflecting optimism, including:
10 and 15 minute versions of the Drop to Zero documentary have been produced and will soon be distributed to clubs for use at meetings.
A new video, “5 ways to end polio” premiered at IC19 and will be available to Rotary members in all languages
A new endpolio.org story, “5 ways our work against polio is fighting other diseases”, shows how Rotary is putting the “Plus” in PolioPlus.
PolioPlus Communications worked closely with the Gates Foundation on RI Immediate Past President Barry Rassin’s appearance with Bill Gates at a Rotary District Conference in Spokane, WA. Our collaboration resulted in multiple news stories and extensive social media coverage including posts about Rotary from Bill Gates and a Gates Notes blog that was highly complimentary of Rotary.
Planning for World Polio Day 2019 is under way. Rotarians and clubs are encouraged to host events, and a promotional toolkit for Rotarians has been finalized. This year’s Online Global Update (formally the “livestream”) will be entirely pre-taped and aired on Facebook in multiple time zones and languages, ensuring Rotarians everywhere are able to view the Global Update at a time that’s convenient for them.
Recent news coverage:
A press release announcing the last two rounds of IPPC grants received coverage in nearly 15 news outlets in Pakistan, Nigeria and the U.S., including:
Rotary Commits $100M to Eradicate Polio (Crain’s Chicago Business)
Pakistan gets lion’s share in Rotary aid for polio campaign (Pakistan Observer)
Rotary Int’l injects $100m into global polio fight (African Presse Agency)
Barry Rassin and Bill Gates participated in a joint interview for Forbes: Why Bill Gates Partners with Rotary to Eradicate Polio In a joint interview with Devin Thorpe, Bill Gates and Barry Rassin discussed our historic partnership in the fight to end polio. The article quotes Bill Gates as saying, “We’re going to get to the end of this, and Rotary will be the reason that will happen.”
PolioPlus Director Carol Pandak was featured in the CDC Foundation’s Contagious Conversations podcast: Behind a Historic Eradication Effort with Carol Pandak: Ending Polio for Good
National PolioPlus Committee Chair Aziz Memon was interviewed and quoted extensively for a New York Times article: To Calm Nervous Families, Pakistan Changes Polio Vaccination Tactics
Social media snapshot: Since the last bimonthly update End Polio Now social media channels collectively received more than 1,000 new followers. Facebook increased to 204,609 followers, and End Polio Now Twitter increased to 54,659 followers.
The most popular content on End Polio Now social media channels highlighted Rotary members’ commitment to polio eradication awareness:
News of Bill Gates and former Rotary President Barry Rassin’s District Conference appearance in Spokane, WA received 748 shares, 946 likes and 14 comments on Facebook, as well as 83 retweets, 158 likes and 55 clicks on a promotional article on Twitter.
Rotary’s 10 June announcement of $100 million in grant funding for polio eradication received 1000 shares, 790 likes and 17 comments on Facebook, as well as 117 retweets, 190 likes and 70 clicks on the press release on Twitter.
Photos from the End Polio Now walk at the 2019 Hamburg Convention received 207 shares, 706 likes and 23 comments on Facebook, and a photo of the End Polio Now ship that sailed from Russia to Hamburg received 31 retweets and 80 likes on Twitter.
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