OLMA Goes Purple for Polio

By May 18, 2017 OLMA Headlines

Since 1988, Rotary International has joined forces with it’s partners, governments and communities around the word to reduce the cases of Polio by 99.9%.  With just one-tenth of one percent to go, the Interact Club members, students, faculty, and staff of Our Lady of Mercy Academy (OLMA), held a Purple Day to raise funds in support of this important cause.

“In addition to raising funds, the students wanted to raise awareness of this disease and the fact that it still exists,” said Sr. Margaret Curcio, D.M. and OLMA Interact Adviser.  “Thanks to their efforts, nearly everyone in the school on Friday came dressed in purple, which I learned is the color used to mark the pinkies of children in third-world countries once they are immunized.”

Students also promised to lend their support by placing a purple hand print on a large banner that now hangs in the school’s cafeteria.  Together, the school raised more than $300 — a gift that will be matched by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in support of Rotary’s Polio Plus program.

According to facts provided by Rotary International, there are only three countries where polio remains endemic — Pakistan, India and Afghanistan.  Unless the disease is completely eradicated, within 10 years we could see as many as 200,000 new cases each year, all over the world.

Interact clubs, youth-sized versions of Rotary Clubs, bring together young people ages 12-18 to develop leadership skills while discovering the power of service. Rotary International is comprised of 1.2 million neighbors, friends and community leaders who make positive, lasting change in communities worldwide.  For more information on the Tri-County Rotary Club (sponsor of OLMA Interact), email trictyrotarygroup@gmail.com. Our Lady of Mercy Academy is South Jersey’s premier, Catholic High School for young women.  To find out more, visit www.olmanj.org.