LOS ANGELES, Calif., March 25, 2020 – In its sophomore year, the Second Annual Prostate Cancer Foundation Black History Month Assist Challenge more than tripled its fundraising efforts, compared to 2019, by raising more than $500,000 to combat prostate cancer, a disease that affects more than three million men in the U.S. and disproportionately affects African American men. During this year’s Assist Challenge, the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) drafted teams from the NBA and NHL including the Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns and the New Jersey Devils hockey team, the first NHL team to join the program.
“We are overwhelmed at the tremendous support PCF has received from the NBA and NHL franchises to help fund first in field cancer research and provide educational resources with the Assist Challenge,” said Christine Jones, COO, PCF. “The success of the pilot program that kicked-off in Atlanta last year allowed PCF to recruit more teams to participate this year, and reach millions more people – in particular, African American men who are disproportionately affected and are more than twice as likely to die from prostate cancer than men of other ethnicities. We expect to draft more teams next year allowing us the opportunity to raise more money for research and help save many more lives.
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 one in nine U.S. men will be diagnosed in his lifetime. Of note, one in seven African American men will develop the disease and are 76 percent more likely to develop the disease than Caucasian men.
The month-long campaign provided the perfect opportunity to offer life-saving information about risks and screening for prostate cancer through in-person, multi-media, social media, and digital outreach. Teams also aired public service announcements at games, on television and radio, and on various social media channels reaching millions of viewers.
In 2019, the Atlanta Hawks made history by being the first team to partner with PCF for the Black History Month Assist Challenge. This year, they continued to lead efforts by fundraising nearly $170,000, more than a third of the total donation, as well as being proactive in the community through education and providing the necessary resources (such as producing a PSA available for viewing here) to encourage men to take their health more seriously, ultimately helping save lives.
“We were happy to partner with the Prostate Cancer Foundation yet again for a successful campaign,” said David Lee, Atlanta Hawks Executive Vice President of External Affairs and Executive Director of The Hawks Foundation. “It is truly amazing to see that more than $500,000 was raised to fight this disease; we are happy to continue to lead the charge and hope to inspire more teams around the league and in the sports industry to get involved.”
For more information about the Black History Month Assist Challenge and prostate cancer visit www.pcf.org/assist.
About the Prostate Cancer Foundation
The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) is the world’s leading philanthropic organization dedicated to funding life-saving prostate cancer research. Founded in 1993 by Mike Milken, PCF has raised more than $800 million in support of cutting-edge research by more than 2,200 research projects at 220 leading cancer centers in 22 countries around the world. Thanks in part to PCF’s commitment to ending death and suffering from prostate cancer, the death rate is down more than 50% and countless more men are alive today as a result. PCF research now impacts more than 70 forms of human cancer by focusing on immunotherapy, the microbiome, and food as medicine.