By Ebitonye Akpodigha An additional sum of $35 million has been committed in grants by Rotary to support the global effort to end polio, bringing the humanitarian service organization\u2019s contribution to $105 million in 2016. This comes after three new cases of polio virus were detected in Nigeria some months after the country was declared polio-free. In July 2016, two news cases were reported, followed by another one in August. Since then, the Nigerian government has kicked off renewed efforts to control the situation so as not to spread to other parts of the country. Rotary and its partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) are acting to immunize children in Nigeria and countries in the Lake Chad Basin (Chad, northern Cameroon, southern Niger and the Central African Republic). Nearly one-fourth of the funds Rotary announced ($8.15 million) will support the emergency response campaigns in this at-risk region, and last month Rotary provided $500,000 to immediately assist with the outbreak response. This is because funding for polio eradication is particularly vital. While significant strides have been made against the paralyzing disease, with just 26 cases reported in 2016, polio remains a threat in hard-to-reach and underserved areas and conflict zones. \u201cWhile we are disappointed with the recent news coming out of Nigeria, this situation underscores the extreme importance of widespread immunization campaigns and strong disease surveillance in all countries of the world until polio is fully eradicated,\u201d said Mr Michael K. McGovern, chair of Rotary\u2019s International PolioPlus Committee. \u201cThis funding will help ensure that Rotary and our GPEI partners are doing all that we can to redouble our efforts and protect the progress in polio-free parts of the world, as well as stop transmission in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and now Nigeria.\u201d To sustain this progress, and protect all children from polio, experts say $1.5 billion is urgently needed. Without full funding and political commitment, this paralyzing disease could return to previously polio-free countries, putting children everywhere at risk. Rotary has contributed more than $1.6 billion and countless volunteer hours to fight polio. Through 2018, every dollar Rotary commits to polio eradication will be matched two-to-one by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation up to $35 million a year. Rotary launched its polio immunization program PolioPlus in 1985, and in 1988 became a spearheading partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative with the World Health Organization (WHO), UNICEF, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and was later joined by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Since the initiative launched, the incidence of polio has plummeted by more than 99.9 percent, from about 350,000 cases a year to 26 confirmed to date in 2016. In addition to supporting the response in the Lake Chad Basin region, funding has been allocated to support polio eradication efforts in Afghanistan ($5.55 million), Pakistan ($12.36 million), India ($875,000), Somalia ($1.77 million), South Sudan ($2.04 million), and the Democratic Republic of the Congo ($2 million). A final grant in the amount of $2.25 million will support key WHO staff.