Polio survivor takes campaign to government, business leaders

Sock it to Polio Fundraiser Saturday at Simms Millennium Park from 9 to 11:30 a.m.

RAMESH FERRIS has taken the Rotary International campaign to eradicate polio to the highest levels of government and business leaders.

RAMESH FERRIS has taken the Rotary International campaign to eradicate polio to the highest levels of government and business leaders.

Rotary member and polio survivor Ramesh Ferris of Whitehorse, Yukon, will share his personal story and Rotary’s fight to eradicate the crippling disease this Saturday in Courtenay.

He will appear at the Sock it to Polio Fundraiser at Simms Millennium Park from 9 to 11:30 a.m.

Everyone is invited to enjoy a pancake breakfast (by donation), walk around the park and listen to an entertaining and inspirational talk by Ramesh. Bring your spare change or currency of any kind to help us fill a giant sock.

For every dollar raised, two more dollars will be donated thanks to the Government of Canada and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. All funds raised will be used to eradicate polio.

Born in Tamil Nadu, India, Ferris was infected by polio when he was six months old. He was adopted by Canadian parents at age two and, after numerous surgeries and physical rehabilitation, learned to walk with crutches.

Ferris first made news in 2008, when he hand-cycled across Canada to help Rotary raise awareness and funds to fight the disease that still threatens children in parts of Africa and Asia. Ferris cycled more than 7,110 km by bicycle over 173 days.

“Ramesh is an inspirational speaker that everyone should hear. This is a rare opportunity not to miss,” says Courtenay Rotary president Rod Hunter.

Ferris has more recently toured the world sharing his personal message in the fight to end polio.

In February, he attended the polio summit in New Delhi, India, where the World Health Organization removed India from the polio-endemic list. He has also made recent advocacy trips to Afghanistan and Pakistan, two of the countries that remain polio-endemic.

“Rotary’s fight against polio has such a personal connection for me,” said Ferris. “To be able to prevent children from suffering through the same pain and suffering that marred my childhood is something that truly touches my heart.”

Rotary’s top priority for more than 25 years has been polio eradication. To date, Rotary has contributed more than US$1 billion and countless volunteer hours to protect more than two billion children from polio.

Rotary and its partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) have reduced the incidence of polio by more than 99 per cent. The final pone per cent needs to be eradicated to keep this disease from spreading again.

— Courtenay Rotary Club

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cumberland Brewery is looking to expand its patio space temporarily for the summer. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Cumberland Brewery looks for temporary patio expansion

Move would allow business to spread customers outside in summer months

School District 71’s final budget for this school year showed more revenue from distance learning students but less from traditional classroom registration. Record file photo
Comox Valley Schools’ budget grant almost $5.5 million higher than planned

Increase came from a boost in distributed learning rather traditional registration

A&W on Ryan Road confirmed a positive case of COVID-19 at their restaurant and temporarily shut its doors. Google Maps photo
Courtenay restaurant temporarily closed due to COVID-19 exposure

It’s the latest business in the Valley to be affected by the virus

The CSRHD board moved closer to passing a budget with a $4.4 million cut to the tax requisition. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Comox Strathcona hospital district moves on budget with tax cut

At $12.6 million, budget requisition represents drop of $4.4 million for current year

Courtenay councillor Will Cole-Hamilton, standing at right, sits on steering committees of two organizations that are tackling the problem of greenhouse gas emissions. File photo
Courtenay councillor leads campaign to reduce building-sector GHG emissions

Courtenay councillor Will Cole-Hamilton wants local governments to carry a little more… Continue reading

Dr. Bonnie Henry leaves the podium after talking about the next steps in B.C.’s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
COVID: 589 new cases in B.C., and 7 new deaths

No new outbreaks being reported Feb. 26

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents bill to delay B.C.’s budget as late as April 30, and allow further spending before that, B.C. legislature, Dec. 8, 2020. (Hansard TV)
How big is B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit? We’ll find out April 20

More borrowing expected as pandemic enters second year

The first of 11 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft's have arrived in Abbotsford. Conair Group Inc. will soon transform them into firefighting airtankers. (Submitted)
Abbotsford’s Conair begins airtanker transformation

Aerial firefighting company creating Q400AT airtanker in advance of local forest fire season

The Canada Revenue Agency says there were 32 tax fraud convictions across the country between April 2019 and March 2020. (Pixabay)
Vancouver man sentenced to 29 months, fined $645K for tax evasion, forgery

Michael Sholz reportedly forged documents to support ineligible tax credits linked to homeownership

Then-Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson looks on as MLA Shirley Bond answers questions during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria. (Chad Hipolito / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
B.C. Liberal party to choose next leader in February 2022

Candidates have until Nov. 30 to declare whether they are running

After nearly 10 months of investigations, Mounties have made an arrest in the tripping of an elderly woman in Burnaby this past April. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Mounties charge suspect for tripping elderly woman near Metrotown in April

32-year-old Hayun Song is accused of causing bodily harm to an 84-year-old using her walker

Most Read