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Focus next Friday on ending polio

News | Published:

ELIMINATING polio is the aim of Purple Pinkie Day on Friday 28 February.

Purple crocuses are starting to appear over the island as the Rotary clubs get ready to mark Purple Pinkie Day on Friday as they continue the fight against polio. (27207725)

Branded #Purple4Polio, the Rotary Club encourages inventiveness with all things purple to raise money for polio vaccinations.

Currently polio is incurable, but vaccines offer a preventative measure.

Rotarian Jannine Birtwistle said that purple represents the purple dye placed on a child’s little finger to signify they have received life-saving polio vaccine drops.

‘The island’s two Rotary – Guernesiais and Guernsey – work on polio activities jointly. Eradicating polio is the number one humanitarian priority for Rotary clubs globally.’

More than 450m. children receive multiple polio vaccine doses every year in about 60 countries. Immunisation drops cost 20p.

More than 500,000 purple crocuses have started to bloom in the Bailiwick as a reminder of the fight to immunise against polio.

‘These purple crocus are a joint initiative between Rotary in Guernsey, Floral Guernsey and the sponsors of the corms, Appleby Guernsey LLP.’

A list of sites where crocuses can be found is available on request.

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‘This purple haze in spring each year reminds us that the polio virus continues to be a threat to children everywhere, until the world sees zero cases and zero positive samples in water and sewage across the globe for at least three years,’ said Mrs Birtwistle.

Purple crocus buttonholes are available for a donation.

‘We are planning our crocus corm planting for 2020 and would be interested in hearing from any community groups who would like to get involved.’

For £135, a box of 4,000 corms can be purchased to be used for public planting.

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While polio cases are down by more than 99% since 1988, they still persist.

‘We have come so far since Rotary made the promise back in 1985 to rid the world of polio but there are enormous challenges still to overcome.’

A poster and information sheet is available on request.

. Rotary Club will happily give presentations to any size of group and age of audience. Alternatively, visit www.endpolio.org, email pauljannine@icloud.com or call 07781 450725.

Emily Hubert

By Emily Hubert
News reporter

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