Montrose pupils to plant crocuses in fight against polio

Lisa Stevenson and her enthusiastic band of volunteers at St Margaret's
Lisa Stevenson and her enthusiastic band of volunteers at St Margaret's

Caring pupils at a primary school in Montrose are to plant 270 purple crocuses to raise awareness about polio.

Montrose Rotary Club have launched the ‘Grow You Own Crocus’ project to raise funds in a fight to end the illness.

The purple colour of the flowers symbolises the purple marking on a child’s little finger after they are immunized.

Pupils at St Margaret’s Primary School, Blackfriars Street, are to plant 270 purple crocus bulbs. They will then sell them on in the spring to raise funds for the polio cause.

Montrose club president-elect Lisa Stevenson said: “We are indebted to Marie Fenton, head of St. Margaret’s Primary School.

“Along with her band of enthusiastic pupils who have volunteered to plant and grow 270 purple crocus bulbs, the colour purple symbolizing the purple marking of the pinky of each child immunized as a means of identification. Simple but effective.

“We look forward to seeing them sell their flowering plants in the spring, not forgetting that all proceeds will be tripled by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.”

Montrose Rotary Club also held a race night in September which raised £730 for the cause.

‘End Polio Now’ is a major Rotary International campaign to eradicate polio worldwide once and for all. It started in 1985 when there were 125 Polio endemic countries.

Lisa added: “Pessimists said it could never be done but it has been a case of ‘never say never’ because as of the end of 2015 there is only one country left.

“Afghanistan and Nigeria were the latest to be declared polio-free leaving only Pakistan. We cannot stop now or all the invaluable good work will be undone, indeed potentially leaving our own unimmunized children at risk in this age of multi-travel”.