October 24 is Worldwide Polio Day ~ established by Rotary International over a decade ago to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk, who led the first team to develop a vaccine against poliomyelitis. For Worldwide Polio Day and in celebration of Cathy's efforts, Nevada City Rotary will host a local walk to End Polio. This campaign will stay open through Worldwide Polio Day!
One of Nevada County California's own, Sam Dardick changed the face of polio and those with physical disabilities. As a young teenager Sam Dardick contracted polio which left him paraplegic. His courage, compassion for self and others, and bold activism in many realms, inspired his family and community throughout his full life. He was a global change agent as an urban planner, County Supervisor, disability rights activist, farmer, and All-American wheelchair athlete. In this video, his son Caleb shares his Dad's special life.
Rotarian Cathy Wilcox-Barnes is hiking the Camino Santiago across northern Spain to raise monies to EndPolio once and for all in Sam Dardick's honor. No child should have to live with the disabling effects of polio. Thanks to Rotary International's global End Polio campaign, we are ever so close to ending the threat of polio worldwide … but we are not there yet.
During a 500+ mile pilgrimage, Cathy Wilcox-Barnes is raising money to eradicate polio on our planet. You can help End Polio by contributing to this campaign. Every dollar you donate will go directly to Rotary's Polio Plus campaign and will be matched 2 to 1 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to triple your $1! With the Gates match, every $1 you donate will inoculate 5 children.
Donate a few cents or dollars per mile or a fixed number of dollars of any amount using the Donate to this campaign button on the right. Every dollar you give makes a difference!
In the early 20 th century, polio struck tens of thousands of Americans. Polio, or poliomyelitis, attacks the central nervous systems often paralyzing those it afflicts. Many of us grew up with loved ones or acquaintances like Sam who had been in some way physically impacted by polio. Children stricken with polio often live their lives walking with the aid of crutches, using wheel chairs for independent mobility or breathing with the aid of massive iron lungs. It can be a devastating, frightening disease – and today, while it still persists, it is preventable.
Major medical advances starting with the Salk vaccine make polio an avoidable disease. The United States and most parts of the world have eliminated new cases of polio. Rotary, along with our partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, has reduced polio cases by 99.9 percent worldwide since our first project to vaccinate children in the Philippines in 1979. We've immunized over 2.5 billion children in the world's most sophisticated global health initiative.
However, 3 countries in the world are still considered endemic: Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria. And just this year we have seen a reemergence in Syria. Until polio is eradicated, children in every country, INCLUDING the United States are still at risk. The tragedy today is that polio is preventable but has not yet been eradicated. We are close to eradicating polio, but we need your help. Help us make history by getting to zero. Please donate today.
About Cathy's journey
Cathy Wilcox-Barnes is President of the Rotary Club of Nevada City (CA). Cathy will be walking 582 miles with her sister Helen along the Camino Santiago del Norte across Northern Spain. Starting July 22 in Irun, Spain near the French border the sisters will spend 6 – 8 hours walking each day. They started slowly with 6 – 7 miles a day for the first few days and now plan to average 13 miles a day for the rest of the journey. Their intention is to arrive in historic Santiago de Compostela, Spain by September 3. They will spend the night in Albergues (or pilgrim hostels) along the way.
Cathy is sending photos to be posted as updates along the journey. Participate with her through your financial contribution and follow her along the journey by checking Updates (see menu tab) on this site often in the coming weeks. The Update for August 1 '17 includes a longer 7 minute video In Honor of Sam Dardick ~ A Special Life by his son, Caleb Dardick.
Please note, Cathy and her sister are self-funding their journey. All monies donated to this campaign will go to Rotary's EndPolio Campaign and will be tripled by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation's matching funds!
Walking the Camino to Santiago de Compostela is a modern-pilgrimage for thousands of pilgrims each year who make the journey for various reasons. Cathy has chosen her service to Rotary and Rotary's commitment to Make History and End Polio once and for all in honor of friend and colleague, Sam Dardick.
Let's blow the top of the original modest goal and make history today with your partnership!
Rotary and Polio Fact Sheet for more information.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT AND PARTICIPATION!!!
Breakdown of Costs
- End Polio Now contribution $1,500.00
- Overhead $0.00
If Funding Goal is Exceeded:
Rotary International's goal is to raise $50 million/year for the next three years which the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged to match $2 for every $1. Exceeding our campaign goal will go directly to Rotary's EndPolio Now! Campaign. Let's blow the lid off our goal and make the sky the limit!!!
If Funding Goal is Not Met:
Every $1 raised becomes $3 thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. $.60 pays for the inoculation of 1 child. With the Gates Foundation match, every $1 donated will inoculate and protect 5 children!