Male Bag Riders deliver more than $400,000 for PCFA, providing the funds to launch an important new initiative.
A group of 26 intrepid men have raised over $400,000 for PCFA by riding from Perth to Melbourne on former postie motorbikes.
The ‘Male Bag Ride’ was devised by Julian Dewan and Tony Clayton, who led the 4,500km journey onboard Honda 110cc bikes.
“We started The Male Bag Ride, as we saw the Postie Bike journey from Perth to Melbourne as the perfect platform to raise much needed funds for Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia and awareness for prostate cancer,” said Dewan.
Having initially hoped to raise $200,000, the group more than doubled their target and helped spread the work of PCFA by attracting huge media attention across Australia, which included a fantastic feature on Channel Ten’s The Project.
The men raised funds through online donations and sponsorship including principal sponsors Australia Post, Boral, Bendigo Bank, the Murray Meander, Honda, Adelaide Airport, Qantas, Perth Airport, Grill’d, Cyclotek, Fasco Air Systems and Wolf Blass. They also raised funds along the way through fundraising events including a “Sport Night” in Adelaide.The event was attended by numerous guest speakers, including basketball legend Jan Stirling and Olympic cyclist Patrick Jonker.
The adventure of a lifetime took the men 11 days to complete, with the group experiencing sleepless nights, police escorts, numerous media stops and huge support all along the way. The ride ended in style at Melbourne’s iconic MCG, where the men took a rest to watch a game, making an honorary lap of the stadium during half time, when the cheque was presented to PCFA to huge cheers from the crowds.
AFL legend David Parkin OAM was the proud Patron of the ride and also joined the men along the way.
“I personally admire what this group of men is doing in order to raise awareness of prostate cancer in the community,” said Parkin. “Together, we can break down the barriers of embarrassment that men have when discussing male cancer so that diseases such as prostate cancer are caught much earlier.”
The money raised from the Male Bag Ride will go towards funding a very important initiative aimed at bringing clarity to the controversy around PSA testing.“
PCFA’s 2012 Community Attitudes Survey showed that almost 40% of men find the advice about PSA testing is confusing. That's why we need evidenced-based national clinical guidelines to bring some order to the PSA testing debate. The guidelines will maximise the lives saved through testing, whilst minimising the negative side effects.
I am pleased to report that with the support of the Male Bag Riders, PCFA can now confidently progress this project in partnership with Cancer Council Australia and, of course, our urologist, pathologist and epidemiological colleagues.” said Dr Lowe.
Dr Lowe was also keen to praise the efforts of Dewan, Clayton and his team of riders.
“We are very proud and grateful to be the recipients of this incredible fundraising event,” he said. “These men have raised awareness of prostate cancer to the many hundreds of people they spoke to along their journey and through the media attention the ride attracted. As a result of the funds raised the men will have a lasting national and international legacy by funding the National Clinical Guidelines on PSA Testing.”