“When Malala can do it, I sure can,” says a courageous Saad Khan. All of twelve this young man is hell bent on eradicating polio from Pakistan. From awareness rallies to administering polio drops he does it all to “help my people, my country and the most important reason is that I want to make the world a better place.”
Early-Act Club of Lahore Greenwood, RI District 3272 (Pakistan and Afghanistan), is sponsored by Rotary Club Metropolitan Lahore (RCML) and “it’s the first active Early-Act club in Asia” says Rotarian Saleem Ahmad Khan, member of RCML and proud father of the EarlyActor. He was 7 when he attended his first Rotary Conference as an EarlyActor and at the age of 11, Saad Khan became a Paul Harris Fellow, sponsored by PDG Ravi Vadlamani, RI District 3150. “Two years ago I met an interesting boy in Pakistan. He was propagating polio awareness at such an early age and I wanted to honour him,” recalls the PDG.
In a recent attempt to create polio awareness his Early-Act club engaged in a stage performance. “My friends and I discussed the play and Miss Bushra, our teacher helped us script it. Five hundred people watched us perform the story of a polio worker who visits an underdeveloped village to administer polio vaccine. The illiterate village chief tells his people: ‘Do not let the polio worker vaccinate your children. Else they won’t stay Muslim and will be thrown out of the village.’ The scene changes when a polio-stricken child explains his plight to the villagers and begs them to save their children from polio.”
Skating and reading are a passion for Khan who aspires to become a lawyer and a Rotarian just like all the other members of his family. “I am going door to door administering polio vaccine to children. I am sure that by the time I become a Rotarian, polio will be gone.” His club also creates awareness programmes on dengue and raises funds to feed the poor.
“I want to visit India, because my friend Haffi, who was sent to India for a heart surgery came back and told me, ‘India mein maza aya! (I had fun in India.)’ ”