Rotary jam initiative nears £400,000 for End Polio Now campaign

Rotary jam initiative nears £400,000 for End Polio Now campaign

Tiptree jam and Rotary devised a different way of fundraising for polio. Now that work has helped to raise nearly £400,000.

The manufacturers of Tiptree have been honoured for their part in raising almost £400,000 for Rotary’s End Polio Now campaign.

Scott Goodfellow, the Joint Managing Director of Wilkin & Sons, along with Rotarian Nigel Dyson, were presented with People of Action Polio Awards during a Rotary assembly at the Writtle Agricultural College in Chelmsford.

The Essex jam makers have been involved with Rotary since 2003-04 through a ‘Spread and Save’ project first hatched by Ray Burman.

They donated 65,000 jars of marmalade with specially printed labels, which Rotary members bought for £1 and then later filled them with spare change. The money went towards The Rotary Foundation.

Three years ago, when Eve Conway was Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland President, she launched the Purple4Polio tea parties with Tiptree and Typhoo Tea to spread the message about polio.

The jam manufacturers managed to produce two special jams for the charity fundraiser, greengage and plum, and arranged for delivery of the product to Rotary clubs across the isles.

At the celebrity launch of the Purple4Polio tea parties in London, the Great British Bake Off’s Martha Collison, herself a former Rotary Young Chef contestant, made a cake filled with the Tiptree Purple4Polio jam.

We are on the brink of an historic milestone as we are so close to eradicating only the second human disease ever after smallpox.”

For the three years until the end of March, the total raised by the Purple4Polio jam initiative has been £132,451 which, when trebled by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, who are matching every pound that Rotary raises to end polio with another two –  this amounts to nearly £400,000.

“It is a great honour and pleasure for me to present this People of Action Polio Award to Scott Goodfellow, joint Managing Director of Wilkin & Sons, and Nigel Dyson from the Rotary Club of Kelvedon & District,” said Eve.

“The Purple4Polio jam initiative has given a major boost to contributions in Great Britain and Ireland to our Purple4Polio campaign to End Polio Now and forever – and achieve Rotary’s top goal of a polio-free world.

Eve praised the role of Nigel Dyson who was the mover and shaker behind the Purple4Polio jam.

Having originally discussed the idea with Wilkin & Sons of producing 1,500 jars of jam for the Essex Rotary district, Nigel asked tongue in cheek whether they might like to produce 52,000 jars of Purple4Polio jam to be donated to every member of Rotary across Great Britain and Ireland.

Wilkin & Sons have not only produced jam to support Rotary’s polio campaign. In 2011, they produced 50,000 bottles of a special Rotary tomato sauce with Rotary members, once again, filling up the bottle when empty with cash.

Speaking at the Essex District Conference, Eve Conway said that Nigeria would soon be certified polio-free since it had gone three years without a reported case of the wild poliovirus.

She said: “We are on the brink of a historic milestone as we are so close to eradicating only the second human disease ever after smallpox.

“So far this year, there have been just 22 cases of wild poliovirus globally in only two countries: 7 in Afghanistan and 15 in Pakistan.

“We have come a long way when Rotary started our rather ambitious campaign to eradicate only the second human disease ever back in 1985 when there were a thousand cases a day in 125 countries.”

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