By Nurse Diane
On January 3, 1938, in a response to the national epidemic of Polio, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt founded the March of Dimes. Polio is a condition that can leave people with permanent physical disabilities, and Roosevelt was himself diagnosed with polio in 1921, and it left him unable to move his legs. There were more than 3100 Chapters across the country when it was founded, and from 1938 to 1955, the foundation spent $233 million on polio patient care. That is alot of money these days; imagine how much it was before the 1950's! The money was raised by having booths set up in the streets, and the children were encouraged to drop dimes in the slots. These booths were set out in public and without any security to watch them, according to Wikipedia.
In 1955, Jonas Salk invented the vaccine for Polio, and the disease has since been eradicated. However, the March of Dimes continues to function. Now the organization’s focus is birth defects. Mainly informing mothers about prenatal care, and the importance of immunizations.
Today is the birthday of the March of Dimes. To learn how you can help, or where to donate to help with education, visit this site: http://www.marchofdimes.com/?src=ps_00b