A SEAFORD Rotarian helped immunise children against polio in the outskirts of Delhi, India.
Rotary Club members in more than 200 countries are leading a global effort to eradicate polio worldwide.
As the lead private sector partner of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, Rotary has contributed nearly US$800 million to fight this crippling and potentially fatal disease.
Of even greater significance are the countless volunteer hours of more than one million Rotarians who have donated their help to immunise nearly two billion children in over 122 countries over the last 20 years.
Seaford past president John Owen, paying his own passage, made a working visit to a deprived area in the outskirts of Delhi, India.
Day one of the visit, working from one of the “booths”, he had the privilege to be involved in a team of four immunising 620 children by squeezing drops of the oral vaccine into the mouths of children under the age of five.
Day two, the same team dressed in canary yellow, so that they could be recognised and bring people out to satisfy their curiosity, proceeded on to house-to-house calls to immunise those that could not get to the booths.
John reported that there was such a warm and friendly welcome from the people who have very few possessions of their own but still took a great interest by gathering to witness the help being administered.
They understood what the helpers were doing and why the help was there for the children.
John said: “It has been extremely rewarding knowing that you are really doing something worthwhile and seeing the happy friendly children and the appreciation from their families.
“It was an awe-inspiring experience – never to be forgotten.”