In basketball terms, an assist is a pass that helps a teammate score. For the Atlanta Hawks, an assist in February could lead to growing awareness of the prostate cancer problem facing so many men. For the third consecutive season, the Hawks are partnering with the Winship Cancer Center at Emory to raise money for the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF). Every time a Hawks player chalks up an assist during a home game, $250 goes immediately to the foundation. Since starting the program in 2019, the Hawks say they’ve raised nearly $318,000 dollars for the PCF.
“Teaming up with the Hawks for this campaign continues our mission to lessen the burden of cancer and ultimately improve the overall health and wellness of the citizens of Georgia and beyond,” said Adam Marcus, with the Winship Cancer Institute.
The Hawks announced Tuesday night this years challenge will begin with their Feb.1 home game vs. the Los Angeles Lakers and continue for the month of February. The Hawks have 15 games during February which is also Black History Month. Christine Jones of the PCF couldn’t be more excited about teaming up with the Hawks. “This past year has put a spotlight on the need for more health equity programs to solve the cancer rate disparity issue in Black men. During Black History Month, the NBA will help us bring awareness about the facts regarding prostate cancer, and what men need to do to know their risks and numbers,” said Jones.
The Hawks were one of six teams who took on the challenge last year to help raise funds in their local communities. This year, two teams have so far announced intentions to participate.
The cancer foundation says roughly one in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime. They also say Black men are 76% more likely to develop the cancer than a white men.
According to the Winship Cancer Institute, more than four million men in the United States have or are dealing with issues related to prostate cancer.
The Hawks have created a web site to keep a running tally of their pledge total and provide additional resources on what they can learn at the Cancer Institute. You can find that link here
Stay up to date on the Hawks’ pledge total for the Prostate Cancer Foundation and find additional resources provided by Winship Cancer Institute by visiting their website.