Join Amanda Peet in the Fight to End Polio on World Polio Day
Oct 24, 2014
Written by: Amanda Peet, Every Child By Two Vaccine Ambassador
Last summer I traveled to Kenya as part of a UN Foundation/Every Child By Two delegation to ensure access to vaccines throughout the globe. While there, our delegation traveled to a remote village to meet a little boy named Job Alphonse, who had recently contracted polio along with his sister and brother. Sadly, Job’s mother confided that she had not vaccinated her children at the guidance of her former spiritual leader. While three of her children had contracted polio, only Job’s case had caused permanent paralysis in his legs.
The community health nurses and UN staff explained that the family’s cases had galvanized Kenyans to conduct intense vaccination efforts to stop the spread of the disease in what was once a polio-free country.
It was heartwarming to meet families throughout the country who are truly grateful for the life-saving vaccines provided to their children, as well as the dedicated community volunteers who walk for miles to ensure that not one child is left without protection. Witnessing these efforts truly solidified my commitment to raising awareness of the need to support global vaccination efforts.
Today, the vast majority of the world is polio-free. Nearly 80 percent of all polio cases are concentrated in just one country: Pakistan. The two other remaining polio-endemic countries – Afghanistan and Nigeria – continue to show progress. Nigeria has decreased polio cases by 87 percent and Afghanistan has recorded fewer than 10 cases of this devastating disease.
Tonight I am proud to be taking part in Rotary’s World Polio Day Livestream Event at 6:30 PM CST. During the event, viewers will receive an update on the status of polio eradication, featuring Global Polio Eradication Initiative partners, celebrity ambassadors, polio survivors and special guests.
Please join me tonight to learn how we can all take action to help eradicate this disease from the face of the earth!
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