Watertown Rotary Club will provide the Polio Eradication Oral Vaccine for 25,000 Children in 2018
 Over the past three years, 2015-2017, The Watertown Rotary Club has secured $12,092 plus matching grants of 2 for 1 from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Your continuous generosity the past 3 years has provided oral vaccine for over 60,000 children. Well Done! In 2018 we have a goal of $5,000. Here is how and why:
 
 The 2018 Swimarathon on February 24th, at the YMCA will host swimmers who have a goal of fundraising $5,000 towards Polio Eradication. With matching grants of 2 for 1 by the Gates Foundation we will be able to fund oral vaccine for over 25,000 children this year!
 
 2018 Swimmers and Fundraisers:  Beth Linderman, Ben Coe, Howie Ganter, Jeff Wood, Jeff Barnard, Bob Gorman, Dianna Woodhouse, Bill Hartman, Mark Walzyck, Dean Witmer and Jim Fitzpatrick. Marsha Anderson is our administrative expertise person.
 
 Polio Eradication History: Rotary International has partnered with The World Health Organization (WHO) since the mid 1980’s and since 2013 with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to eradicate Polio. This has been accomplished by providing both monetary funds and people power. To date, 99.9% of the world is Polio free. We are “this close” as indicated by holding thumb and index finger slightly apart.
 
 The Current Situation: Unfortunately the crippling disease still lingers in two countries: Afghanistan and Pakistan.  Nigeria has recently experienced no new cases during 2017, after a relapse in the hinterland area of the northern state of Borno. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has agreed to pay off the $76 million of the debt incurred by Nigeria to clear the country of the disease in 2017.
 
 Rotary International and Partners are Determined:  Rotary and its partners are determined to complete the fight to eradication Polio. The battle has been slow but sure. Victory in eliminating only the second disease ever is close at hand. The first, the Smallpox disease was declared eradicated in 1980 following the WHO global immunization campaign.
 
 Thank you for your support.
The Foundation Committee: Kate Fenlon, chair, Don Klug, Steve Todd, Jeff Wood, Pete Salmon, Ben Coe