Wakefield Rotary Helps to End Polio Now

Contact Amy at wakefieldrotaryclub@yahoo.com to join our 2019 Polar Plunge Team to #endpolionow!

A hallmark of The Rotary Foundation, the End Polio Now campaign to erradicate polio world-wide, is 99% complete with its mission. Only the second disease to be erradicated from the planet, polio continues to threaten Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria. The Rotary Foundation has led the efforts to eradicate polio since 1985 and has developed strategic partnerships including The World Health Organization, UNICEF, Center for Disease Control, international advocates, and local governments. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation continues to be the largest financial supporter for the eradication effort and has provided grants totaling $555 million to The Rotary Foundation for vaccination and awareness campaigns.

Local Support The Wakefield Rotary Club supports the eradication and awareness efforts. We’re proud to be the biggest team in the Plunge and raise the most for the past 3 years of any club in our area! In 2015, the Wakefield Club submitted a team 0f over 40 friends, family and  members to the Polar Plunge in February. Plunging off the cold waters of Gloucester, the team raised over $20k! The Wakefield Club was just one of 48  district clubs to contribute to the total $119,000 collected during the plunge event that year! The club also received Rotary District and Zone acknowledgements for raising the most money for the event. And thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation 2:1 pledge, the club total donation was $60k! In 2016, we took in just over $12k and again had the largest team in the area, and $10k was raised in 2017 and just over $12k in 2018.

First time plunger Terry Holmgren after his first dip in the fridged waters.

First time plunger Terry Holmgren after his first dip in the fridged waters in 2014.

Multiple-time plunger Ed Harding explained, “At just 60 cents a vaccine, we wanted to make sure we had an impact. It was a great feeling to know we literally had a hand in preventing a crippling disease from affecting a child.” For first time plunger Terry Holmgren, the event was inspiring, “It was overwhelming to see how many people from all over the district participated in this event. I was amazed to see people of all ages and travelling many miles come to jump into frigid water for a cause.”

Again, the Wakefield Rotary Club is stepping up and creating a Polar Plunge team for the event on February 9, 2019. To join our plunge team or make a tax-deductible donation, email us at wakefieldrotaryclub@yahoo.com or click on our official page.

For more information about the Gates pledge, click here.
To make a tax-deductible donation to the eradication effort, click here.
Click here for more information on The Rotary Foundation’s amazing journey to eradicate polio.
Click here for a video of our 2013 Plunge!