A plug for a worthy cause

Bendigo Weekly | Bendigo Weekly | 26-Oct-2017

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In just four weeks’ time, more than 400 men will take part in the annual Biggest Ever Blokes Lunch, raising important funds in the fight against prostate cancer.

The lunch has grown from a single event launched by the late Chris McPherson AM in Shepparton in 2009, to one where 11 events will be held across Australia this year, all part of the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia’s largest fundraising initiative.

Sadly, Chris died in December 2015, but after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2007, he opted to turn his own personal challenge into an opportunity for the community by playing a key role in instigating the lunches which the Weekly has been a part of since 2010.

For Chris’ efforts, we are all extremely grateful, and those of us who knew him were indeed fortunate to do so.

About 20,000 people have enjoyed one of these Blokes lunches, raising more than $2.7 million for PCFA across Australia since 2009.

Locally, Bendigo blokes have contributed more than $500,000 to the cause. While these lunches have become a highlight on the calendar for a lot of us, they are about a lot more than just having a couple of beers, a meal and a few laughs.

Each year also provides a sombre reminder of the reason we all come together, and how important prostate health and raising awareness and funds for PCFA programs, actually is.

Nationally, prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men, and authorities expect more than 3000 men will die of prostate cancer each and every year.

That’s more than the number of women expected to succumb to breast cancer, but in any instance, there’s no acceptable numbers when it comes to any form of cancer.

And while 50 per cent of the population might think this column is not relevant to them because they are not blokes, it is actually relevant to everyone.

One of the best things any of us can do, at any given occasion and on any day of the year, is to simply ask our mates, our partners, or our work colleagues if they are doing okay.

Men are notorious for doing a better job of looking after their car/bike/shed than their own health, and a bit of support and encouragement from loved ones can go a long way, both ways.

On Friday, November 24, it’s on again, and we are looking forward to hearing from world champion boxer Danny Green and his dedication and commitment to his own personal health as an example we can all learn from.

We’ll have a couple of drinks, enjoy a barbecue lunch, have some fun, but more importantly we will raise awareness among ourselves about prostate cancer, and how important it is for men to check and monitor their health, and to encourage their mates to do the same.

I hope to see you there.  

pk@bendigopublishing.com

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