New partnership in cancer research calls for public support
5 For The Fight is looking for the public to help realise its great ambitions.
A new partnership in cancer research is asking the Irish public to donate money in order to help find a cure for the hardest cancers to treat.
Breakthrough Cancer Research, an Irish medical research charity, has joined up with the experience management company Qualtrics to create 5 For Fight, which aims to raise €500,000 to fund a tumour immunology programme.
5 For The Fight is to hire a research team that can best drive Breakthrough's programme with the general public being asked to get involved by donating €5 to the 5 campaign in memory of anyone close to them who died from cancer. They are then encouraged to write this name on their hand and post a picture of it to Facebook, while tagging five friends. Each donation will be matched by Qualtrics until the first €100,000 is raised.
Speaking about the partnership, Orla Dolan, CEO of Breakthrough said: “The worst day for a patient and their family isn't the day they are diagnosed with cancer. It is the day when they are told there’s nothing left to try; that the treatments available won’t work. That’s the day we want to take away.
“While cancer survival rates have increased and treatments have improved for many types of cancer, this is not the case for all. Unfortunately, there are some cancers such as pancreatic and ovarian which we haven’t seen any improvement in survival rates for over 20 years.
"So we want people to donate €5 euro and then tag five friends to help this go viral. Qualtrics will then match this and double the gift. We really have the capacity to raise €100,000 by the end of the year. We already have €30,000 so far."
"Breakthrough focuses on research for cancers with low survival rates and those most difficult to treat," Dolan added.
"We fund programmes that tie together university research with frontline work by doctors, nurses, surgeons and oncologists. We're lean and punch above our weight, and we have taken our work from the lab to clinical trials, which have already benefited patients.
"Qualtrics are coming from this from a very emotive place. Their managing director, Dermot Costello, was diagnosed with terminal cancer three and a half years ago. He made the announcement recently to his staff that he will be stopping treatment. He is a very inspiring man because he has said this isn't about him. It is for his family, people who have cancer and those they don't want to leave behind."
What Qualtrics and Breakthrough intend to do is fund a programme that can harness the human immune system to eradicate cancers, and particularly those with a poor prognosis.
The 5 For The Fight global campaign aims to raise $50M for cancer research and treatment, while Qualtrics’ European effort will be led from its EMEA HQ in Dublin.
Sarah Argue, Learning and Development Manager at Qualtrics, said: “By 2020, one in two people will be affected by cancer. At Qualtrics we made a commitment early on that if we were successful as a company, we would put everything we could into helping to find a cure.
“Awareness isn’t enough - we need research to find the cure and that’s why we’ve teamed up with Breakthrough Cancer Research. It’s an opportunity to invest in the scientists that will work to find it and every milestone we hit means an extra person can be hired to that team so they get to that cure faster.”
For more information, check out the 5 For the Fight website.