Thousands of crocus bulbs planted in Warwick for worldwide Polio campaign

The Rotary Club of Warwick planted 5,000 crocus bulbs at the weekend.
The Rotary Club of Warwick planted 5,000 crocus bulbs at the weekend.

Thousands of crocus bulbs were planted in Warwick at the weekend as part of a worldwide campaign.

On Sunday members of the Rotary Club of Warwick planted 5,000 purple crocus bulbs on the bank next to the bus station in Warwick.

The planting was part of the Rotary Club’s worldwide campaign “End Polio Now”.

Club President John Hibben, was helped by Keith Hinton and other members early in the morning and it is hoped the flowers will welcome people arriving into Warwick.

Rotary’s World Polio day is on October 24 and marks the progress being made to eradicate the disease which paralyses children.

In the 1950’s 8,000 people a year in the UK were paralysed by polio, and the discovery of a successful vaccination has helped reduce the cases of the disease.

Across the world in 1988 350,000 children a year still caught Polio, with the resultant impact on not just their own lives but the economy of their countries.

Of the 1 in 200 cases that lead to paralysis, about 5 to 10 per cent will die from the disease, but for every child that is paralysed, another 199 children can silently spread the disease.

As long as a single child remains infected with polio, children in all countries are at risk.

The purple crocus is the same colour as the finger of an immunised child.

Rotary clubs around the world have worked to raise funds to immunise over 2.5 billion children in 122 countries, with local Rotarians going to India to help administer vaccines.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has challenged Rotary to raise money and the Foundation donate £2 for every £1 raised by the Rotary.

Countries have now become Polio free and it now only remains in Afghanistan and Pakistan, with just 37 cases worldwide in 2016.