Spring 2015  

ASCRS collaboration with Colon Cancer Alliance reaches new donor base to gain wider public visibility

Colon Cancer AllianceThe ASCRS collaborative effort with the Colon Cancer Alliance (CCA) is reaching a new base of potential donors for the ASCRS Research Foundation and giving the Society’s name, our specialty and patient care mission much wider public visibility.

“The Undy Run/Walk is a family-friendly 5K run and one mile walk, formerly known as the Undy 5000, and gets people talking about colon cancer and prevention, with the ultimate goal of saving lives. By participating – whether to support a loved one, honor the memory of someone lost to the disease, raise awareness or simply run through the streets in a wild pair of undies – their community of survivors, families, healthcare professionals, runners, sponsors and friends are making a difference across the country,” says Dr. Alan Thorson, Omaha, NE, who is the liaison for the collaboration.

“The Undy Run/Walk reaches a wide public audience and our new collaboration offers us the opportunity to reach that same extended audience,” Dr. Thorson explains. In exchange for verifiable support from colon and rectal surgeons in cities hosting an Undy Run/Walk, the CCA will make a donation to the Research Foundation for every registrant and publicly recognize the Research Foundation as the recipient of CCA research dollars. In addition, the specialty of colon and rectal surgery will be prominently displayed at Undy Run/Walk events.

“By helping the CCA increase participation in Undy Run/Walk events in communities across the nation, we get people talking about colon cancer, increase public visibility of the specialty of colon and rectal surgery and raise money for the ASCRS Research Foundation to support important research efforts,” he says.

“In order for this collaboration to thrive, we need active ASCRS member involvement at the grass-roots level,” Dr. Thorson says. Verifiable support from ASCRS members can take a number of forms.

“Most importantly, we urge ASCRS members to get registered for the Undy Run/Walk in their communities. By running or walking with us you are helping the Colon Cancer Alliance knock colon cancer out of the top three cancer killers,” Dr. Thorson says.

However, the Society recognizes that not all members may be able to participate in the actual Run/Walk. There are many other options to show support and secure research dollars for the Research Foundation. ASCRS members near each Undy Run/Walk event can support the cause by sending personal invitations to:

  • Colorectal cancer patients and survivors in their practices, and high risk individuals/those with a family history of colorectal cancer;
  • Medical partners such as referring doctors and medical device and pharmaceutical representatives.

Members may also actively participate by:

  • Displaying local event flyers/brochures/posters in their offices;
  • Including local event information in office newsletters, websites, etc.;
  • Identifying an office champion (physician or staff) to lead a team and recruit staff, patients, friends, family to participate in the local event;
  • Helping to generate fundraising through their offices;
  • Posting to social media sites;
  • Sponsoring the local event.

The bottom line: In consideration of ASCRS members’ efforts to promote the Undy Run/Walk, the Colon Cancer Alliance will donate $1 of every paid event registration to the ASCRS Research Foundation. Based on current projections, these Research Foundation contributions could reach $10,000. The money raised will fund research focused on investigating the molecular basis of young onset colorectal cancer, a growing group of people being diagnosed with colon cancer.

Remaining event sites and dates for 2015 are:

    • Buffalo, NY - April 25, 2015
    • Greater Ft. Lauderdale, FL - May 16, 2015
    • Chicago, IL - May 23, 2015
    • Tacoma, WA - June 6, 2015
    • Denver, CO - June 27, 2015
    • Jersey Shores, NJ - July 18, 2015
    • Nashville, TN - August 8, 2015
    • Philadelphia, PA - September 12, 2015
    • Cincinnati, OH - October 3, 2015
    • Phoenix, AZ - November 21, 2015

ASCRS members in these communities who are interested in serving as one of the Society’s coordinators in your community may contact Dr. Thorson directly at agthorson@msn.com or 402-343-1122.

The Colon Cancer Alliance has appointed Julie Fisher, Senior Manager of the Undy Run/Walk Series, as the liaison to ASCRS members interested in actively participating in the event. Members who want more information, brochures, discount codes or to get actively involved are asked to contact the Colon Cancer Alliance by email undy@ccalliance.org or by phone at (202) 628-0123 ext. 104.

Copyright © 2015 American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, All rights reserved.