(612) 240 – 4034
Project Goal is $250,000 for Rotary International’s End Polio Now Campaign
PHOENIX (Oct. 24, 2011) – Launching today, in honor of World Polio Day, Arizonans are
celebrating their mobility by hiking, biking or riding horseback along different segments of
the Arizona Trail in an 800-mile movement against polio (www.endpolioaz.org). From now
until Feb. 14, volunteers will take pledges for their efforts with the goal of raising $250,000 for
Rotary International’s End Polio Now Campaign.
Polio, a crippling disease that was once commonplace in the U.S., is now only endemic in four
nations (Pakistan, Afghanistan, India and Nigeria) and is on the brink of eradication. Since
1985, cases of polio have decreased by more than 99 percent because of the efforts of Rotary
International and its world partner organizations: the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the
World Health Organization, UNICEF and other aid organizations.
The money raised by the Arizona Trail project will support Rotary International’s goal of raising
$200 million toward polio eradication by June 30, 2012 to qualify for $355 million in matching
grants from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
“While polio exists anywhere, no child is safe,” said Rod Daniels, co-chair of 800 Miles to End
Polio project. “If we are unable to eradicate polio, the disease will continue to paralyze, kill and
threaten children around the world. The fact is that eradication is within our grasp and for as
little as 60 cents we can protect one child from this terrible disease. It is my hope that we will
rally Arizonans around this historic cause.”
With more than 33,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas, Rotary is
able to reach out to national government worldwide to generate crucial financial and technical
support for polio eradication. To date, Rotary has contributed more than $900 million to fight
polio. Rotary club members have volunteered their time and personal resources to reach more
than 2 billion children in 122 countries with the oral polio vaccine.
About 800 Miles to End Polio
800 Miles to End Polio is a partnership with Arizona Rotary districts to mobilize volunteers to
hike or ride the Arizona Trail to raise awareness and funds for polio eradication. From Oct.
24 – Feb. 14, volunteers will celebrate their mobility along the Arizona Trail with the goal of
raising $250,000 for Rotary International’s End Polio Now Campaign. To sign up, donate or find
additional information visit www.endpolioaz.org.