One of our members, Sonia Lowdon, is going to have her head shaved on May 24 as a sponsored event to raise funds for Rotary’s End Polio Now campaign. The colour purple is closely linked to the polio eradication campaign, as an indicator used to mark the fingers of those children who have been vaccinated.

Our club member Sonia has quite a lot of hair, with a polio eradication tinge of purple to it. She’s going to say goodbye to all of that at the District Council meeting on May 24 when her head will be shaved to raise sponsorship monies for Rotary’s End Polio Now campaign.

Rotary is an international community that brings together leaders who step up to take on the world’s toughest challenges, locally and globally. The eradication of polio is one of our longest standing and most significant efforts worldwide. Along with our partners, we have helped immunize more than 2.5 billion children against polio in 122 countries. We have reduced polio cases by 99.9 percent worldwide and we won’t stop until we end the disease for good.

Since 1985 Rotary has led the battle against polio, and kept the pressure on as worldwide cases plummeted from 350,000 per year to several hundred. When India went off the list of endemic countries in 2012, we took one more step toward eradicating a human disease from the earth for only the second time in history. Now, Rotary and its partners are This Close to making that dream a reality. There are now just three countries where the disease in endemic (Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria) and Rotary is working in each of these to help finally eradicate the disease.

Key to these efforts is raising money to fund vaccines, and that’s where Sonia’s efforts are concentrated. By sponsoring her head shave event, you can help; rid the world of Polio once and for all.


It’s currently not possible to sponsor Sonia through online sponsorship platforms; this is in part due to the fact that the Rotary Foundation never spends any of the money raised on administration or fundraising, instead using the proceeds of investments to fund running costs. This means that every penny donated goes to the End Polio Now campaign, and indeed, will be matched with funding from the Bill and Melinda Gate Foundation, resulting in £3 going to the campaign for every £1 donated. This will be increased further if you’re a UK tax payer and indicate this on the sponsor form, allowing gift-aid to be reclaimed.

A sponsor form is below, which can be downloaded or printed. If you’d like to donate, and are having any issues, please do contact us and we can help you. We can take payments electronically if required.