Posted by Glynis Carter on Nov 21, 2021
A collective sigh of relief from Aucklanders last week with the news that the hard border around Auckland would be lifted on 15th Dec. At last an opportunity to plan ahead and the anticipation of an (almost) normal Xmas and holiday period, with families able to reunite and also travel out of Auckland. Bring it on! 
On Tuesday evening I joined Pukekohe Club on a zoom meeting featuring Bob Aitken as their guest speaker. Bob was a reporter/editor on RDU magazine for many years and basically considered Mr Polio for our Zone which includes New Zealand and Australia. Rotary's initiative has almost eliminated the Polio virus worldwide, which was highly contagious and affected children the worst, causing widespread death and disability. Being in the middle of a pandemic caused by a virus, it really brings home just what an epic effort this has been. The Sabin vaccine has been refined over the years to now an oral vaccine (so much easier to administer) and last year there were only 2 cases, the remaining two countries Pakistan and Afghanistan, with India having been polio free for 10 years.
Apparently the Taliban are on board with the initiative and by 2023 they expect to be able to declare the world free of it.
Some things to note - as with all our Rotary projects every cent raised goes to the cause - because our clubs are run and funded by their members, and we are unpaid volunteers. In the case of Polio, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation matches our funds raised 2:1 - what a return on our money!  
Just writing this before leaving for Leanne's house to pack handbags for women's refuge. Very much looking forward to catching up with some of our members in person.
Now you have met Kristina Henare, I am sure you will agree that she will be perfect for lining up our speakers and following through on those reminders. So please send through any suggestions to me or It would be good to get onto the program for next year now.