NRL kicks goal against bowel cancer
The NRL recently reached an important milestone in support of saving lives and making people aware of one of Australia's biggest killers, Bowel Cancer.
In May this year, the league embarked on its second year raising awareness of the serious nature of bowel cancer and just how prevalent it is, particularly for men.
Every year, 15,000 cases are detected in Australia and sadly, 4,000 people don't survive.
With the support of Bowel Cancer Australia, The Gut Foundation and Cancer Council New South Wales, the NRL set an ambitious target to encourage all Australians who may be at risk to take a simple online test and better understand their risk of bowel cancer.
"Thanks largely to the support of our clubs, players, fans and members, over 15,000 people took the online test – more than the number of those diagnosed each year," said NRL Head of Community Adam Check.
"It takes the total number of tests to over 24,000 across the past two years, and while it's certainly raised the profile of this disease, it's also developed a host of champions for this cause.
"90 per cent of Bowel Cancer cases can be treated successfully if caught early and we're lucky that we have such a supportive rugby league community who looked out for each other and helped spread the word to everyday Australians to take the test."
This year's NRL Kick Bowel Cancer campaign doubled the number of tests taken online to those taken in 2014. Both State of Origin teams also leant their voices and call to action, resulting in one of the largest captive rugby league audiences of the year being made aware of the campaign.
NRL Ambassador Alan Tongue was proud of the rugby league community for getting behind a cause very close to his heart.
"I've seen first hand the devastating effect that Bowel Cancer can have," said Tongue.
"To know that if it's caught early, it's a cancer that can be treated successfully in most cases – that's more reason to continue to take a simple test every now and then, for you and your families peace of mind," said Tongue.
To continue to take the online test in the future and to encourage others to remain vigilant, visit www.nrlkickbowelcancer.com.au.