The Rotary Club of Ikeja South has collaborated with Old English Superstores and Indoor Design Concepts Limited to contribute to the global effort of polio eradication.
The partnership was announced during a ceremony where End Polio Donation Boxes were launched at Old English Superstores, GRA, Ikeja.
In his welcome address, President, Rotary Club of Ikeja of Ikeja South, Rotarian Michael Effiong James, told members and the general public that the End Polio Project is a battle that must be won, noting that as far as there is still one case of polio in the world, then the disease is still a major threat.
He said that it is because if this desire to end polio forever that the club had decided to team up with Old English Superstores and IDCL to raise funds to support the work being carried out by Rotary International in Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Rotarian James revealed that while Old English Superstores has offered its facilities in GRA, Ikeja, Omole Phase 1 and Isolo, IDCL has agreed to design and produce the boxes and create branding materials to promote the initiative.
He thanked the two organisations and called on other corporate organisations to deploy their CSR budgets to worthy causes like this.
In his remarks, special guest at the gathering and District Governor, Rotary International District 9110, Rotarian Jide Akeredolu, applauded the initiative of making end polio donations boxes available for all to contribute to the End Polio campaign.
Akeredolu went down memory lane, giving a vivid description of how Rotary International has worked since 1985 when there were 350,000 cases of polio worldwide to today where only few cases of the wild polio virus are found in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
He said: “A few weeks ago, we celebrated freedom from the wild polio virus in Nigeria but we must not lose our guard.
“The work goes on.
“We should remain vigilant and keep the advocacy on so that the government and all stakeholders will be on their toes.”
Akeredolu also tasked non Rotarians to key into the project, saying though a lot has been done, still a lot more need to be done to kick polio out of planet earth forever.
The District Governor further showered praise on Old English Superstore and its Chairman, Akogun Lanre Alfred, for making his premises available as one of the drop points of the End Polio boxes where members of the public can easily make contributions.
He said: “Old English Superstore is our own WalMart or Tesco just as they have in the United States of America or United Kingdom, there you see these boxes where you are encouraged to donate your spare change for charitable causes and so this is a very good initiative that will help even raise awareness on the right against polio.”
He also extended commendation to IDCL for participating by providing the creatively-designed boxes.
In his response, Chairman, Old English Stores, Akogun Alfred, thanked the Rotary Club of Ikeja South for choosing his facilities for this noble cause.
He said the initiative tallies with his own personal philosophy of contributing to society and humanity.
He therefore pledged not only to contribute financially but mobilise his staff, customers and friends to donate to the cause.
He revealed that though the boxes will be present at all three locations of Old English Superstores, when the fourth store opens in Surulere next month, he will also display same, vowing: “Anywhere Old English goes, the End Polio donation boxes will also go until we have a polio-free world.”
This altruistic commitment elicited a round of applause from everyone present.
While unveiling the colourful boxes, the District Governor prayed that it would be a successful project so that the efforts so far made in the eradication of polio will be sustained and monitored.
Akeredolu followed up the unveiling by dropping a donation inside the box and called on everyone to do same.
The donation boxes were thereafter placed at strategic places in the superstore for the general public to participate.
The End Polio donation boxes Project, an initiative of the Rotary Club of Ikeja South, led by President James, was launched as part of activities to welcome visiting District Governor Akeredolu.
After the launch, the District Governor and his entourage were hosted to a sumptuous lunch at the Club’s meeting venue, Adna Hotel, Ladipo Bateye Street, GRA, Ikeja, after which he met with the Club’s Board of Directors.
Later, there was a session of fellowship and networking before the Club’s regular meeting was held.
In the course of the meeting, new Rotarians: Napoleon Emeaso-Nwachukwu, a legal Practitioner, and Silelola Precious Adepetu, a realtor, were inducted into the Rotary Club.
In addition, six outstanding students of the Adult Literacy Education Programme, sponsored by Rotary Club of Ikeja South, were recognised with certificates and prizes, while a presentation of assorted materials were made to members of Rotaract Club of Medilag Golden by the Club’s Youth Service Chairman, Rotarian Adebayo Adesakin.
The well-attended meeting, which had in attendance Prof. Tokunbo Akeredolu, wife of the District Governor, and other leaders such as District Governor Nominee, Rotarian Remi Bello; past District Governor, Rtn Abayomi Adewunmi; immediate Past District Governor, Rtn Kola Shodipo; Past Assistant Governor, Antonia Taiwo; past Assistant Governor Bade Oke; past Assistant Governor, Lanre Adedoyin; past Assistant Governor Niyi Adesanya; past Assistant Governor Sola Fatoki; District Secretary, Rtn Idowu Afelolgun; past President Julius Nwokoro; past President Azuh Arinze; Doyen Oliver Ogbonna; immediate Past President, Rotary Club of Ikeja, Rtn Niyi Adelaja; and many others, was rounded off with presentations to the Governor and his entourage.