Football players in Australia will be pulling on their purple socks next month to help raise awareness for pancreatic cancer.
The #PlayinPurple campaign was started by Isabella Di Manno in 2015, after the death of her fiancée’s mother due to the illness.
Pancreatic cancer is projected to claim more lives than breast and prostate cancer with around 80 percent of diagnosed patients to die within a year.
In 2019, over 3500 players around the nation wore purple socks to raise awareness for the disease, with the campaign raising funds for research, improving diagnosis and treatment.
“The campaign continues to grow from strength to strength each year, drawing much needed attention to pancreatic cancer,” Di Manno said.
“It’s wonderful to see the participation grow across clubs, codes and regions and reading the testimonials and talking to players, it’s clear the campaign unities communities through active participation and acts as a positive talking point between people who might not necessarily know the outcomes of pancreatic cancer.”
Avner Foundation CEO Michelle Stewart added: “We are excited to see playing fields Australia-wide turned purple for pancreatic cancer, and awareness on this scale is exactly what we need to help shine a light on this disease.
“This campaign is a wonderful opportunity to increase engagement between clubs, players and the community, all participating for a very important cause – pancreatic cancer awareness.”
The campaign has been supported by Football NSW since its inception, with CEO Stuart Hodge proud to promote the cause.
“Football NSW are proud to be supporting a wonderful community initiative, combining the wonderful code of football with truly ground-breaking campaigns such as the: #PlayinPurple – Football socks campaign for the Avner Panceatic Cancer Foundation.
“We kindly encourage our football family to do their bit in getting behind this amazing initiative.”
The Manly Warringah Football Association and Sutherland Shire Football Association have also thrown its support behind the initiative.
“The Manly Warringah Football Association is proud to support Purple Sock Day to help raise awareness for pancreatic cancer. Grassroots football plays an important role in our Community and we encourage as many teams and clubs as possible to get behind the #PlayinPurple campaign,” MWFA CEO David Mason said.
“Pancreatic cancer is on the rise and SSFA is proud to support this important awareness-raising initiative again in 2020. The spirit of sportsmanship is wonderful as local football fields become awash with purple socks, and I encourage associations across the state to participate,” claimed SSFA General Manager Jeff Stewart.
More information about the campaign can be found here.