District 9980 enthusiastically took up the challenge to grow pumpkins for polio – a fun way to raise awareness and funds for Rotary’s End Polio Now campaign.
Led by the world’s youngest district governor, Nick Wood, pumpkin seedlings were distributed around the district and 55 growers signed up. The ‘Atlantic Giant’ variety was the pumpkin of choice, which can grow to more than 800kg!
Funds were raised through sponsorships, with a sponsor paying an amount for each kilo of the final weight. So, if you didn’t grow a pumpkin you could sponsor a grower.
“A celebration to mark the end of District 9980 and announce the winners of the competition was held on April 23, 2022.”
A celebration to mark the end of District 9980 and announce the winners of the competition was held on April 23, 2022.
Rotary hired trucks with cranes in order to move the massive entrants.
With weigh-ins and winners announced, this fun initiative was a great way to come together for a great cause and raise money to continue the fight against polio.
The Rotary Club of Wanaka took out first prize with its 162kg monster, second place went to the Rotary Club of Alexandra for its 135.5kg entry, and third place went to Nick’s home club of Cromwell, which grew a 109.5kg giant.
The competition raised $15,905, with D9980 raising a further $26,107.26 for polio eradication, taking the total contribution to $42,012.26. With the Bill and Melinda Gates contribution, this makes $126,012.78 for End Polio Now. The district also made a District Designated Funds contribution of US$7,500 bringing the district year end contribution to $175,536.78.