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Press Release
October 30, 2015
With the recent presentation of a check for $10,000 to the Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) the Point Pleasant Boro Rotary Club achieved its initial goal to donate $50,000 to fight the disease.
Tim Turnham, Executive Director of the Melanoma Research Foundation, traveled from Washington, D. C. to accept  the check for $10,000 from the Club on Wednesday, October 28th at Graziano’s Italian Restaurant in Point Boro.
The contribution represents a portion of the proceeds realized from the Club’s 8th Annual Kevin A. Brue Melanoma Awareness Father’s Day 5K and Fun Run held last June.
The MRF, the largest independent, national organization devoted to melanoma, the most serious of skin cancers in the United States, has been  guided by Mr. Turnham since January 2009.  It was founded in 1996 and regularly achieves the highest rating from Charity Navigator, the nation’s largest and most utilized independent charity evaluator.
Mr. Turnham, Executive Director since 2009,  updated the Club on some advances in treatment approved recently by the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  He noted that an injection can be used to treat melanoma lesions that cannot be removed completely by surgery and it causes the cancer cells to rupture and die. There is now a first time approved therapy of combining two cancer drugs to unleash the body’s immune system against tumors. The FDA  expanded the use of a drug to include therapy for patients with stage III melanoma, to lower the risk that the melanoma will return following surgery.  
 “This Club made a commitment five years ago to use the race proceeds to help in the battle against melanoma,” remarked Club President Tom Santoro, Jr. “and in each of the last five years the Club was able to donate $10,000 to help the Melanoma Research Foundation. We are proud to be part of this campaign to fight one of the fastest growing cancers in the United States.”
The race is named for Kevin Brue, an avid runner and former Point Boro High School athlete, who passed away after a brave struggle with melanoma. His father John Brue, Sr. and his brother, John Brue, Jr. have served as Rotary Club president.
Mr. Turnham thanked the Club for its commitment to helping defeat melanoma. He stated that “Every step taken in the fight builds on a foundation to provide amazing hope. The life expectancy for a person stricken with melanoma has increased considerably since my first visit to the Point Pleasant Boro Rotary Club five years ago.”
Melanoma can strike men and women of all ages, all races and skin types. With a one in 50 lifetime risk of developing melanoma, nearly 137,000 Americans are likely to have a positive diagnosis this year.  Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25 to 29-years-old and the second most common cancer in adolescents and young adults 15 to 29-years-old. 
The MRF is committed to the support of medical research in finding effective treatments and eventually a cure for melanoma. It educates patients and physicians about prevention, diagnosis and the treatment of melanoma. The MRF is an active advocate for the melanoma community, helping to raise awareness of this disease and the need for a cure. The MRF's website, www.melanoma.org/learn-more/about-us, is the premier source for melanoma information seekers.
The Point Boro Club also aids St. Gregory’s Pantry; sponsors a youth water safety program; continues a dictionary donation for each third grade student at Nellie Bennett and Ocean Road schools; and, awards scholarships to local high school graduates.  The Club is a primary partner with the Boro Police Department in the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program in our Point Pleasant’s elementary and middle schools and underwrites a related self-esteem poster contest. Additionally, club works toward Rotary International’s goal to eradicate polio and provide clean water in underdeveloped areas of the world. It also supports Face of America, a program that honors the men and women who were wounded or disabled while in service to our nation.
The 9th annual 5K is slated to be held on Saturday, June 18, 2016. Jim Higgins, Race Director, indicated that    “The energetic spirit demonstrated in the past by the borough administration and several of its departments, the school system, the running community, local businesses, our fellow residents and our Club members, points to this race continuing its goal to generate assistance to many charitable and community-based groups.”
Rotary International was founded in 1905. The Point Pleasant Boro Club was established in 1971. There are 34,200 clubs worldwide with 1.2 million members who live the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”
More information about the Point Pleasant Boro Rotary Club’s activities can be obtained by visiting www.ptbororotary.com.
    Tim Turnham [far right], Executive Director of the Melanoma Research Foundation MRF), visited the Point Pleasant Boro Rotary Club on October 28 to receive a check for $10,000.  The donation represented part of the proceeds from the Club’s 8th Annual Kevin A. Brue Melanoma Awareness Father’s Day 5K and Fun Run held this past June. The Club has given $50,000 in the last five years to the MRF’s efforts to combat this deadly form of cancer.



Nigeria One-Year Milestone from Rotary International on Vimeo.

On July 24th, the West African nation will have gone one full year with no new cases of wild-polio virus.

Today marks one year since Nigeria last reported a polio case caused by wild poliovirus, putting the country on the brink of eradicating the paralyzing disease.

The last case was reported on 24 July 2014 in the northern state of Kano. If no cases are reported in the coming weeks, the World Health Organization is expected to remove Nigeria from the list of countries where polio is endemic, leaving just two: Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Nigeria is the last polio-endemic country in Africa. The continent is poised to reach its own first full year without any illness from the virus on 11 August.

“Every Rotarian in the world should be proud of this achievement,” says Rotary International President K.R. Ravindran. “We made history. We have set Africa on course for a polio-free future. But we have not yet reached our goal of a polio-free world. Raising funds and awareness and advocating with your government is more crucial than ever.”

Progress in Nigeria has come from many measures, including strong domestic and international financing, the commitment of thousands of health workers, and new strategies that reached children who had not been immunized earlier because of a lack of security in the northern states.

“Rotary’s commitment has been the number one reason for the recent success in Nigeria,” says Dr. Tunji Funsho, chair of Rotary’s Nigeria PolioPlus Committee. “We have infected political leaders with this commitment. The government has demonstrated this with political support and financial and human resources. And that went down the line from the federal level, to the state, to the local governments.”

Nigeria has increased its domestic funding for polio eradication almost every year since 2012 and has allocated $80 million for the effort this year.

Funsho also applauds religious leaders who championed the vaccination efforts to families in their communities.

Despite the historic gains in Nigeria, health experts are cautious about declaring victory. Funsho says the partners must strengthen routine immunization especially in hard-to-reach areas, in addition to boosting sensitive surveillance to prevent resurgence of the disease. If no new cases are reported in the next two years, Nigeria, along with the entire Africa region, will be certified polio-free.

“The virus can be introduced from anywhere where it is still endemic, particularly now in Afghanistan and Pakistan, into areas that haven’t had polio in years,” Funsho says. “It is important we keep the immunity level in Nigeria to at least 90 percent.”

For instance, Syria experienced a sudden outbreak of the disease when 35 cases were reported in December 2013. None had been reported there since 1999. “Immunizations become imperative for history not to repeat itself in Nigeria,” says Funsho.

In June, Rotary announced $19 million in grants for continued polio eradication activities in Africa, including almost $10 million for Nigeria. Since 1985, when Rotary launched PolioPlus, the program that supports the organization’s polio eradication efforts, its worldwide monetary contributions to the cause have exceeded $1.4 billion.

“We’ve come a long way and have never been so close to eradicating polio in Nigeria and around the world, but it’s not a time to fully celebrate,” says Funsho. “We have some grueling years ahead of us before WHO can certify Nigeria and Africa polio-free.”

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