Essay Example on Polio Virus Eradication Project UPenn








Polio Virus Eradication Project UPenn The Polio virus is on its way to being completely eradicated on a global scale Today only three countries in the world have not stopped the transmission of polio Pakistan Afghanistan and Nigeria The polio virus invades the nervous system and can cause total paralysis in a matter of hours It can strike at any age but mainly affects those children under five Polio is incurable but completely vaccine preventable Despite being preventable people all over the world continue to be ravaged by the disease Rotary International comprised of 1 2 million members and 35 000 clubs aims to alleviate such global issues and epidemics like Polio through means of humanitarian services Rotary is an international community that brings together leaders who step up to take on the world s toughest challenges locally and globally The Rotary Chapter at UPenn is an active club organization that has been run by approximately 19 student members for seven years Current president of Penn Rotaract Raluca Gaina 2017 2018 said that Rotary was very prevalent in her home country of Romania and that s why she was interested in getting involved with Penn s chapter Raluca shared that one of Rotary s most prominent goals is its commitment to both local and international service There are numerous volunteer opportunities available to members at the local level in Philadelphia Affiliated local volunteer partners include

The Clyde F Barker Transplant House and the Ronald McDonald House Professional development is pursued through the networking of Rotary Club professionals educators and non profiteers Penn Rotary fulfills the International Service component of Rotary Int l through holding a campus wide fundraiser every semester for an international service project This fall semester Penn Rotary launched its global initiative on the eradication of the polio virus which is still prevalent in some regions of the world Through this campus project the student run organization obtained collective pizza donations roughly around 30 pizza boxes from the local pizzerias on Penn s campus Each dollar made from selling the pizza s equates to a total of 5 polio vaccines The vaccines can be purchased for as low as 60 cents and since the project is triple matched by the Bill Gates Foundation we can buy 5 vaccines for every dollar said Stefanie Williams Local Service Director for Rotary The initiative raised enough proceeds to supply for more than 3 000 polio vaccines Raluca says I believe that service is an integral part of life and am very proud to be doing so here at Penn Initially the hardest part was being able to reach out to everyone on campus given the size of our student body however we ve been able to overcome the issue through our collaboration with other student groups as well as with the implementation of on campus advertisement and a rise in our social media platforms 

It was so touching to see how willing the people on campus were to donate and support the cause even if people did not actually want the pizza said Raluca Ava Barzegar Vice President of Penn Rotaract describes their project as an annual event that Penn Rotaract does in conjunction with Rotary International which is triple matched with the Gates Foundation with the goal of eradicating polio worldwide nevertheless we as a club have learned that we must work together as that is the only way we can truly carry out successful projects Raluca was happy to share that Rotary has reduced polio cases by 99 9 percent worldwide since its first project to vaccinate children in the Philippines in the year of 1979 as stated on the Rotary website It is amazing to see that in 2016 only 37 polio cases were confirmed worldwide compared to the 1 000 cases reported per day in the 1980s which is a huge change says Raluca Gaina President of Penn Rotaract I think the fact that Rotary has stepped up and taken on this mission is something very admirable says Raluca Rotarians have helped immunize more than 2 5 billion children against polio in 122 countries since launching its PolioPlus program in 1985 For most people in the club seeing the success of our project inspires them to try even harder the following year Stefanie Williams Local Service Director for Rotary 

We have chosen to do this because it s been a goal of Rotary for more than 20 years so we re looking to get very involved and finish it through and Given our role as undergraduate students it is sometimes challenging to be acknowledged as impactful leaders on campus but nevertheless we always put our best foot forward said Barzegar As board members and representatives Ava Raluca and Stefanie all shared what they are most proud of from accomplishing such an initiative Ava said As a sole individual you feel as though you don t have a huge influential role or impact but when you re a part of Rotaract and Penn Rotary and you ve raised so much money I feel as though I am doing my part towards a bigger cause and a global effort Raluca said I am most proud of being able to see everyone come together whether it s the pizzarias our members or Rotary contacts who are helping us with this project and also everyone who is helping to donate it is really nice and inspiring you don t often see such coordination among people for a humanitarian cause Stefanie said To work with students who have the same passions and objectives that I hold was awesome because we are all seeking the same end goal to further benefit our community The eradication of polio is one of Rotary s longest standing and most significant efforts and the student members of Penn Rotary look forward to continuing their efforts of putting an end to the polio enigma

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