Rotary Advocacy Efforts Yield Big Rewards
The new plan capitalizes on the best opportunity to eradicate polio, with the number of children paralysed by this disease at the lowest level ever: just 223 cases in 2012 and only 22 so far this year (24 April 2013).
Rotarians have been advocating and obtaining government support of the polio eradication program through meetings with world leaders and public awareness events. Consequently, Rotarians have been able to deliver financial commitments in support of the new end game strategy. “By signing our petition and sharing your voice, you helped demonstrate to world leaders the wide-reaching global support for the push to end polio”, says Rotary International Polio Eradication Leader Robert Scott.
These advocacy efforts played a key role in global leaders announcing their confidence in the plan’s ability to achieve a polio-free world by 2018 and their financial and political support for its implementation.
Bill Gates announced that his foundation would commit one-third of the total cost of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative’s budget over the plan’s six-year implementation, for a total of $1.8 billion.
A new group of individual philanthropists announced their support for full implementation of the new plan with pledges totaling US$335 million, and donor governments renewed their commitment to ending polio. View a list of donors.
These pledges will help immunize more than one billion children, and bring the dream of a polio-free world closer to reality.