A Polio Orientation & Planning Workshop was organized by Pakistan National Polio Plus Committee Chair Aziz Memon and District Governor Elect Mubarak Ali Shahid (3272) on 02 March 2019 at Avari Hotel,Lahore.
The workshop was attended by Prime Minister Focal Person on Polio Eradication Babar Bin Atta, Dr. Munir Ahmed EOC Coordinator Punjab, Attiya Qazi UNICEF Punjab, and District Government Officers, Asher Ali Project Manager PNPPC, Rotary International and 126 Rotarians of RD 3272. National Chair Aziz Memon could not attend the workshop due to suspension of all flight operations in the country.
The workshop started with the recitation of Quranic Verses. District Governor (3272) Muhammad Mushtaq welcomed all Rotarians and distinguished guests. He elaborated the objectives of the workshop and showed his confidence that upcoming presidents will put more efforts to eradicate polio. He gave a brief back ground of Rotary and highlighted the Rotarian contribution on global level. He thanked National Chair Aziz Memon for his untiring efforts and commitment to eradicate polio in Pakistan.
DGE Mubarak Ali Shahid said polio is a serious issue, Rotarians, polio partners and Government must work together to take the program forward. He appraised the contribution of National Chair Aziz Memon in the battle against polio. He welcomed Prime Minister Focal Person on Polio Eradication Babar Bin Atta on behalf of Aziz Memon National Chair PNPPC.
He briefed participants of the role and responsibilities of newly elected presidents of Rotary Clubs. He stressed Rotary Clubs to increase their accessibility to polio partners and plan their strategies to end polio in their regions. He especially stressed Rotary Clubs working in southern Punjab to ensure vaccination to all children. He also spoke on Routine Immunization and because of low routine immunization, children are more vulnerable to the polio virus. He urged Rotarians to get involved with health facilities and open more Permanent Immunization Centres (PIC) in hospitals and clinics to strengthen routine and make polio eradication their club’s signature project.
Zonal Coordinator Punjab PDG M. Saeed Shamsi spoke on collective working of all polio partners and better planning to address issues especially in tier 4 areas. He pointed out a recent onset of polio case from Lahore. He said we have to be more vigil and supervise polio campaigns to achieve desired results.
Zonal Coordinator Khyberpakhtukhawa CDG Rauf Rohaila gave a comprehensive presentation on life cycle of polio virus. He showed power point presentation as how the virus enters into the human body and remains in the intestine and discharge through faeces. He explained the mode of virus spread in the environment.
He elaborated positive environmental situation in Shaheen Muslim Town and said the virus showing its presence since last four years. There is a need for prompt planning includes cleanliness campaign and better coverage of vaccination children and mobile population.
Prime Minister Focal Person on Polio Eradication Babar Bin Atta thanked all Rotarians who’s contribution enables all polio partners to fight against polio in Pakistan. He thanked National Chair Chair Aziz Memon for his commitment and continuous efforts for polio eradication.
He also introduced himself and said “I had been working with WHO & UNICEF for four years and has good knowledge of polio program in the country and my wish is to eliminate polio virus during my tenure”. He assured that he will leave no stone unturned to make his efforts for this cause. He said we have to stop virus transmission and to clear perception of repeated polio campaigns among parents. He stressed the need of gaining confidence of parents especially in posh areas. He requested Rotarians to ensure their representations at union council level to address social issues. He also requested Rotary to intervene in Bannu and Bajour districts as these areas are in need more attention and facilities.
Project Manager PNPPC Asher Ali highlighted Rotary’s support to eradicate polio in the country. He gave a small brief of project model to support UNICEF and WHO activities and provision of Training facilities for Community Health Workers (CHWs), PTP shelters for Front Line Workers to cover transit children on highways, Railway stations and Airports.
He said Rotary through its Safe Drinking Water project named “Zindagi” in collaboration with Coca-Cola Pakistan and UNDP provides clean drinking water by installation of solar powered water filtration plants and RO Plants at 16 locations in polio high risk areas of Karachi, Multan, Jaranwala, Muzafargarh and Peshawar. The intervention is providing access to polio teams in security compromised areas of Pakistan. He presented a brief video clip of Safe Drinking Water Project. PM Focal Person Babar Bin Atta appraised the efforts for providing Safe Drinking water in urban slums and polio high risk areas and urged more water plants for KPK and tribal districts.
Question & Answer session
A question & answer session was held in the end of the workshop provide opportunity to clear concepts. A number of question from the participants were asked about polio virus transmission. PM Focal Person Babar Bin Atta facilitated the session and replied all questions and said this is good forum to clear the myths and give clear perception to incoming Rotary leadership. Babar gave more information about high risk areas and stressed cleaning of these areas and more coverage to children.
Vote of thanks
Zonal Coordinator Punjab PDG Saeed Shamsi thanked all Rotarians who came from different cities of Punjab and Khyberpakhtunkhawa and specially thanked Babar Bin Atta for his dedication and actively participating in the workshop.