The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) has once again drafted teams from the NBA to help fight prostate cancer with the Third Annual PCF Black History Month Assist Challenge in February. Teams participating during the month-long fundraiser and awareness campaign include the Atlanta Hawks, Chicago Bulls, and Phoenix Suns. For every assist registered at games throughout February, the Hawks Foundation will donate $250 and the Chicago Bulls Charities will donate 50/50 raffle earnings over a two-week period to PCF to help advance prostate cancer research.
The PCF Black History Month Assist Challenge is a first-of-its-kind, multi-dimensional program designed to create awareness and raise money to fight a disease that affects more than three million men in the U.S., with one in eight men being diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime. Black men are disproportionately impacted: One in seven will develop the disease and are almost 80 percent more likely to develop prostate cancer than White men. Black men are also more than twice as likely to die from the disease than men of other ethnicities. In 2020, PCF announced its research initiative to develop the Smith Polygenic Risk Test for Prostate Cancer, a non-invasive, early detection test that will identify a man’s lifetime prostate cancer risk using a single sample of saliva or blood. The research initiative is designed to improve the understanding of genetic risk in Black men.
“We are thrilled and honored that NBA teams have again joined our efforts in reaching out to save men’s lives,” said Christine Jones, COO, PCF. “This past year has put a spotlight on the need for more health equity programs to solve the cancer rate disparity issue in Black men. During Black History Month, the NBA teams will help us bring awareness about the facts regarding prostate cancer, and what men need to do to know their risks and numbers.”
Through multi-media, social media and digital outreach, the month-long campaign held during Black History Month provides the perfect opportunity to provide life-saving information about risks and screening for prostate cancer. Teams will also be airing public service announcements on television and radio as well as on various social media channels reaching millions of viewers.
In 2019, the Atlanta Hawks made history by being the first NBA team to partner with PCF for the inaugural campaign and were later joined by six other NBA teams in 2020. The campaign brought in almost $500,000 in fundraising, of which the Hawks dominated efforts by raising $318,000 to support life-saving research.
“Our partnership with PCF for the Black History Month Assist Challenge has made a significant impact on creating awareness for this important men’s health issue,” said Grant Hill, Hawks Vice Chair of the Board and Naismith Memorial Hall of Famer. “Together, we can continue to educate our community and provide the resources needed to inspire men to take this disease seriously and possibly save lives.”
For more information about the Black History Month Assist Challenge and prostate cancer, visit www.pcf.org/assist.