The Australian Wallabies are using their historic match against the USA Eagles on their way to the 2015 Rugby World Cup as the backdrop to launch a campaign that aims to raise awareness of prostate cancer.
The Australian Rugby Union (ARU) and match sponsor Astellas have teamed up with the Prostate Cancer Foundation Australia (PCFA) and the Australian Prostate Cancer Research group to launch #Pass4Prostate.
Kicked off in Sydney today, #Pass4Prostate is a global social media campaign in which participants are encouraged to post a video of themselves “throwing a football pass” on social media using the campaign hash tag to trigger donations from Astellas to prostate cancer foundations around the world.
Managing director of Astellas in Australia, Takenoya Osamu, said the company was excited to be using their sponsorship to drive the new campaign.
“Astellas is constantly looking for ways to use sponsorships to promote better health around the world. This rugby-oriented social media campaign will hopefully raise awareness of prostate cancer and drive substantial fundraising for the not-for-profit groups that are so important in providing support for men and their families affected by prostate cancer,” said Osamu.
Associate Professor Anthony Lowe, CEO of the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, said that innovative campaigns like this were needed to continue to challenge Australian men to face up to important health issues.
“We are pleased to be involved in the #Pass4Prostate initiative with Astellas and the Australian Rugby Union. Prostate cancer is a major health issue facing men in Australia and around the world, so if we can encourage more men to talk to their doctor about this disease it will be a great success,” said Lowe.
Australian rugby union players took a break from their training today to help promote the campaign. Wallabies Nick Cummins and Nick White also travelled to the USA earlier this month to promote the match and the #Pass4Prostate initiative.