A Polio Orientation & Planning Workshop was organized by Pakistan National PolioPlus Committee on July 10, 2021 at the Movenpick Hotel in Karachi from 9 am - 2.30 pm. It was chaired by Trustee/National Chair Aziz Memon and District Governor Dr. Aftab Imam (3271). The workshop is a training ground for all Rotary Club PEs and AGs as well as Club Polio Chairs. It was heartening to see total number of participants 115 including 19 Rotaractors from across Sindh as well as DRR 3271 Dilawar Abro participated in the workshop. The Rotaractors from Sindh were also helpful in coordinating and helping PNPPC in distribution of advocacy material and registration of participants.
TRF Trustee/ National Chair Aziz Memon
Participants as per agenda
District Governor Dr. Aftab Imam (RID 3271)
Rtn Atiqua Vali - District Trainer 2021-22
PP Muneeb Khan- Honorary Treasurer PNPPC
Dr. Altaf Bosan-Technical Focal Person NEOC
Dr. Zahra Seid - Provisional Team Lead Acting WHO Sindh
Abid Hassan- Communication Specialist UNICEF Sindh
PDG Faiz Kidwai Director Elect 2022-24, Rotary International
Fayyaz Abbasi- Coordinator EOC Sindh
Dr. Abdul Sami Khan-Technical Support, EOC Balochistan
Dr. Ahsanullah Bhurgri-Technical Focal Person EPI Sindh
Haji Hanif Tayyab- Chair Ulema Polio Pus Committee
PP Masood Bhalli- Zonal Coordinator Sindh
PP Saleem Raza - Zonal Coordinator Balochistan
PP Dr. Paradeep Harchandani - member PMPPC
PDG Irfan Queshi
Alina Visram Manager PNPPC
Asher Ali- Project Manager PNPPC
Tazmeen Zahra- Asst Communication Manager
Jazmine Vania-Communication Officer
Minutes of the Meeting:
The workshop started with a recitation of Quranic Verses, followed by Trustee/ National Chair Aziz Memon welcoming all participants. He then opened the session for the speakers to begin the proceedings of the workshop
Atiqua Vali-District Trainer addressed the root causes of Polio virus where she informed that 1% presence of virus is still risky for transmission of polio; this is the last year for elimination of polio as only 1 case has been reported so far within this year. She requested all Rotarians to create more awareness and advocacy sessions within their surroundings. Donations will be more helpful in eradication of polio. Every individual should play their role in ending polio
PP Muneeb Khan- Honorary Treasurer PNPPC He briefed about his journey in Rotary as a Rotarian. He emphasized on transparency and utilization of social mobilization, budget constraints, record keeping of each financial instrument ‘& documentation of all related carried out in holding health camps.
Dr. Altaf Bosan- Technical Focal Person NEOC initiated his focus on reaching out to each child for routine immunization. He also said that polio is a serious issue, Rotarians, polio partners and the Government must work together to take the program forward. He referred to the sad incident of slain polio worker Wajid Ali who lost his life on duty to cover refusals. He requests to involve more Rotarians in the last round; more advocacy required. He requested Rotary to depute one person at each health sector to social mobilizing and create awareness at all levels.
He praised the contribution of National Chair Aziz Memon in the battle against polio.
Dr. Zahra Seid Provisional Team Lead Acting WHO Sindh gave a detailed power point presentation where comparison of previous years polio affected cases with current cases was discussed. She discussed 8 Super High Risk Areas where the ratio of refusals is high. Initiatives taken during the last 3 years to eradicate polio were also discussed. She appreciated the role of Rotary and ensured the supportive role was played where required.
Abid Hassan- Communication Specialist UNICEF He addressed on the Communication Strategies & Advocacy for Polio Eradication faced in polio campaigns. He said the last round is most important, and that collective contribution is vital. At the government level, district involvement is mandatory. Proper check & balance should be there and he also informed us that 53 % of refusals ratio has declined because of advocacy sessions held and involvement of social mobilizers & activists.
DG Dr. Aftab Imam-2021-22 RID 3271 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 focused on the motivation of staff/workers, Rotary Clubs working in Balochistan to ensure vaccination of 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. He praised the contribution of National Chair Aziz Memon in the battle against polio.
PDG Faiz Kidwai- Director Elect 2022-24 RI He shared the snapshot of the success story of Rotary International in Polio eradication. He wishes all the best to DG Dr. Aftab Imam for his tenure. He added that the last round required more focus to eliminate polio virus. He thanked Rotary and TRF/National Chair PNPPC for endless & fruitful efforts made in this struggle to eradicate this disease.
Fayyaz Abbasi- Coordinator EOC Sindh He thanked Rotary for the opportunity to share views. He stressed that continuous efforts should be made at the last stage of polio eradication. He emphasized that no negligence will be acceptable and said ''we have to be more vigilant about coverage of missed/NA children.''
Dr. Abdul Sami Khan-Technical Support Officer EOC Balochistan
Started with the PowerPoint presentation in which he shared the statistics of polio affected cases for the last 3 years. He elaborated on the positive environmental situation in Balochistan and other districts of KP. There is a need for prompt planning including a cleanliness campaign and better coverage of vaccination children and mobile population.
Dr. Ahsanullah Bhurgri-Technical Focal Person EPI Sindh gave a detailed presentation on polio eradication program. He highlighted the efforts made by EPI in End Polio now.
TRF Trustee/ National Chair Aziz Memon highlighted Rotary’s support to eradicate polio in the country. He gave a small brief on literacy and advocacy material available for Routine Immunization and guidelines on what Rotarians can do to help eradicate polio. He emphasized on more contributions & efforts made to eliminate this virus and stressed on the commitment and dedication are two strengths, which are key to win the war against polio virus. He also thanked our health partners UNICEF and WHO for their support. He said polio partners have played an important role to make Pakistan Polio Free. He ended by saying, 'we will fight until Pakistan us polio free'.
Haji Haneef Tayyab- Chair Polio Ulema Committee He started the session by praising the contributions of TRF Aziz Memon. He briefed the last one decade journey of polio eradication where the role of Ulema/Clerics. He added that advocacy sessions and ulema workshops are conducted on a regular basis to counter the refusals and misconception against the polio vaccination.
Question & Answer session
A question & answer session was held at the end of the workshop to provide an opportunity to clear concepts. A number of questions from the participants were asked about polio virus transmission. National Chair and Team Leaders of WHO, UNICEF, EOC facilitated the session and replied to all questions and said this is a good forum to clear the myths and give clear perception to incoming Rotary leadership. Dr. Zahra Seid WHO gave more information about high risk areas and stressed cleaning of these areas and more coverage to children.
Break out sessions were coordinated by:
PP Masood Bhalli - Zonal Coordinator Sindh
PP Saleem Raza - Zonal Coordinator Balochistan
PP Dr. Pardeep Haechandani - member PNPPC from Hyderabad
Break out sessions facilitated by respective coordinators helped new Rotary club Presidents on what and how they can help in the cause of polio eradication and what form of advocacy is necessary during polio campaigns
Vote of thanks
PDG Irfan Qureshi thanked all Rotarians who came from different cities of Balcochitan and Sindh, he thanked all the guest speakers and the Chief Guest for attending the workshop. He lauded the efforts of the TRF/National Chair PNPPC Aziz Memon for his dedication and active participation to make the workshop successful.