Posted Wed 6 Jun 2018
At TORI, charity support is a fundamental part of our day to day - there are so many worthwhile causes which all deserve our support but we always like to pick one that has a personal connection to us.
This year we will be working with The Errol McKellar Foundation which raises funds for research, plus awareness, of prostate cancer.
One of our founding partners, Steve Davies, has been battling with the illness for a long while and we know that some of those battles have been long and hard fought. So along with sending all our love and support to Steve we wanted to do something practical.
Errol has also suffered from this illness which now kills more people than breast cancer. Errol’s story is an interesting one - he went to the doctor about his snoring and saw a poster with a footballer talking about getting tested for prostate cancer. He asked for the test and discovered that his prostate had 92% cancer. He has recently been awarded the first ever NHS Hero Volunteer award recognising all his efforts, as almost 50 of his garage customers only discovered they had cancer because he offered them discounts if they could prove they took a PSA test.
When we decided to support this new charity we realised it has a slightly different challenge from our previous charity work. Raising funds is obviously critical, but actually a major challenge for prostate cancer is awareness: it seems that you boys don’t like talking about what’s wrong with your ‘bits’! But every 45 minutes one man dies from prostate cancer, and even with the best treatment in the world if you don’t go and get yourself tested then it can’t help you.
Our hope is that by supporting Errol as he shares his story, it becomes a subject men feel more confident and comfortable to discuss. More information is at www.theerrolmckellarfoundation.com.
So apart from raising money, we will be asking you to go and get yourself tested if you're over 50 - and then post on the Just Giving page with the message “I’ve been tested” and donate £1. You can do it anonymously but we want to measure real behaviour change and action.
We have a calendar of fund-raising events planned – from golf days to an awareness evening later in the year where we will get victims, consultants and cancer research specialists to come along and tell their story. This will also include an anonymous question and answer session – to ask all those things you want to know but were afraid to ask. As well as support from TORI, the Errol McKeller Foundation is also supported other friends of Errol and his team who have lost loved ones to prostate cancer. They include Olympic and World 100m champion and world record holder Donovan Bailey, triple world champion hurdler Colin Jackson, TV presenter Sian Lloyd, ITV's 'Chaser' Shaun Wallace, and actor and Strictly Come Dancer Danny John-Jules. Keep an eye out for updates in the near future – but in the meantime, if you're a man over 50 get yourself tested!!