All football and netball clubs across the AFL Barwon region are united in their support of ‘Melanoma Awareness Round’ this weekend
All local footballers, netballers and umpires will take part in the inaugural Melanoma Awareness Round to highlight the risks associated with playing sport in the outdoors. The Melanoma awareness round is growing, with more than 2000 footballers, netballers and umpires across Victoria supporting the campaign.
Australia has the worst rates of melanoma cases in the world, with 30 Australians diagnosed with melanoma every day.
Known as Australia’s national cancer, more than 1700 people will die from the disease each year, a rate which exceeds the national road toll.
Melanoma contributed to 10% of all new cancer cases diagnosed in 2016 and it’s estimated that 1 in 18 people will risk being diagnosed with it by their 85th birthday.
With stats such as these, it’s our social responsibility to spread this important message to all our players to remind them to get their moles checked as the stats are getting worse in the near future.
AFL stars including Adelaide midfielder Rory Sloane and Richmond spearhead Jack Riewoldt feature in videos as ambassadors for the round, which can be see across the AFL Barwon social media channels.
Round organiser Steve Goode lost his wife Carolyn to Melanoma cancer in June last year aged 45, sparking his passion to raise awareness around the cancer.
“Melanoma cancer doesn’t discriminate; it affects people of all ages and genders and unfortunately kills a lot of young people,” he said.
“It’s football looking after me in a funny way I suppose. As a society, we tend not to talk about things such as moles and speaking up to friends and family to get them checked when we may see one on them.”
It can sometimes be a very awkward topic and it just needs the discussion out there to ensure that it becomes something we are able to talk about freely and understand how serious it can be.
“Hopefully if we can educate people and get the awareness out there more, it will help save lives,” Goode said.
If the Awareness Round has encouraged one person to go to the doctor and get a check-up, then it is worth it.”