While October 24, 2021, is designated as World Polio Day, Rotary Clubs are encouraged to use the month of October to host events to raise the awareness in their community of the accomplishments to date, the need to continue the fight, and to raise funds to support the ongoing efforts.

As World Polio Day approaches, the Rotary community is getting ready to amplify our message about eradicating polio to protect the world’s children from this devastating disease.

Together, we’ve made tremendous progress. Now it’s time to intensify our fight to make polio the second human disease ever to be eradicated. Last year, the World Health Organization’s African region was certified free of wild poliovirus, showing that eradication is possible even in very difficult circumstances. The wild poliovirus remains endemic in just two countries: Afghanistan and Pakistan. We can use World Polio Day to advocate for the support we need to end polio in countries where it still paralyzes children.

Inspire Action

  • Take action for World Polio Day by promoting the importance of polio eradication, raising funds, and planning events. Let’s engage our communities in the fight against polio — because as long as polio exists anywhere, it remains a threat everywhere.
  • Use the World Polio Day Toolkit to find resources and tips for planning activities and promoting a polio-free world. Inspire others to join us by hosting virtual and community events, creating fundraisers, and sharing posts on social media
  • Register your club’s participation in World Polio Day to show how Rotary, Rotaract, and Interact clubs around the world are taking action to eradicate polio. If you register your events, fundraisers, and promotions by 14 October, you’ll get early access to a download of Rotary’s World Polio Day Global Update one week before the program will be shown on 24 October on Rotary’s Facebook page and endpolio.org.
  • Use Raise for Rotary to start an online fundraiser to benefit The Rotary Foundation’s PolioPlus Fund for World Polio Day. Then, share it with your network! The top Raise for Rotary World Polio Day 2021 fundraisers will be featured on My Rotary.

What is Polio

  • Polio is a crippling and potentially deadly infectious disease.
  • It is caused by the poliovirus. The virus spreads from person to person and can invade an infected person’s brain and spinal cord, causing paralysis.
  • Warning signs include flu-like symptoms such as sore throat, fever, tiredness, nausea, headache, stomach pain.
  • More serious signs include:
    • Paresthesia (feeling of pins and needles in the legs)
    • Meningitis (infection covering the spinal cord and/or brain)
    • Paralysis or weakness in the arms, legs, or both
    • Paralysis is the most severe symptom associated with polio because it can lead to permanent disability and death. Between 2 and 10 out of 100 people who have paralysis die because the virus affects the muscles that help them breathe.


Watch video of Polio Survivor Dennis Ogbe.