Public gardens around Crawley will become beds of purple crocuses next Spring after on of the town’s Beavers colonies joined the fight to eradicate polio worldwide.
In collaboration with the Rotary Club, the 7th Crawley Beaver Scouts have planted 5,000 purple crocus corms for Rotary International’s Purple4Polio campaign.
On Monday they were helping the Crawley Memorial Garden workers in the heart of the town centre planting 3,000 crocus corms.
They were joined by scout leaders, their parents, members of the Rotary Club, Lions and the Forget Me Not dementia care support group.
Later in the morning, they went to St Catherine’s Hospice where staff there helped with a spot of gardening.
The Crawley Beavers are just one of hundreds groups across the country taking part in the Purple4Polio crocus planting initiative. For them it is also helping them achieve some of their badges.
They started last month at Crawley Hospital on the green opposite the Olive Tree and in front Rainbow Nursery school where they laid 700 corms.
Earlier in October they visited East Surrey Hospital where, with the help of the dermatology department staff they planted corms in the courtyard by the chemotherapy suite.
Scout leader Yvonne Seetayah said: “This activity is one criterion which a Beaver Scout needs to complete for their Community Impact Stage 1 badge and My World badge.
“The latter being a Challenge badge, is one of six that a Beaver Scout needs to acquire in order to be qualified for the coveted Bronze Chief Scout Award - the highest achievement in Scouting, a Beaver Scout can acquire at their age.”
For the first badge the Beaver Scout needs to take practical action in the service of others, in order to create positive social change.
It needs to be at least four hours long, spread over a period of time, benefit the wider community as well as the young people taking part.
The Purple4Polio campaign is part of Rotary’s 30 year worldwide commitment to eradicate polio.
In that time the amount of polio-endemic countries has dropped from 125 to just two, with over 2.5bn children receiving vaccinations thanks to the help of Rotary.
Purple crocuses were chosen because the colour represents the purple dye used to mark the finger of a child who has been immunised for polio.
With eradication now closer than ever, Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland’s latest campaign, Purple4Polio, is designed to unite communities to engage in activities as part of the final push to eradicate polio for good.
For more information about Rotary and Purple4Polio go to www.rotarygbi.org/what-we-do/purple4polio