What we've done so far
There are some pretty amazing people (Team Purple) who, despite having lost loved ones to pancreatic cancer – some within weeks of diagnosis, are determined to push for change.
Team Purple learnt that only 1% of research spend had historically been allocated to pancreatic cancer. We found this unacceptable and decided to lobby the Government by launching an epetition asking more Funding & Awareness but finding 100,000 people to sign the epetition was not going to be easy!
The e-petition and ensuing Debate
A successful epetition needs amazing MP backing and a lot of public support....oh and a few celebs in your corner is an added bonus!
Sounds easy, but the reality is that it wasn’t! We got off to a great start with amazing support from Nic Dakin, MP and Team Purple took to social media trying to find 100,000 signatures.
Pancreatic cancer knows no boundaries, it can strike men or women at any age – it doesn’t discriminate. It’s the UK’s 5th highest cancer killer and it really is in everyone’s interest to see progress so, to us, it was a hugely important petition.
Team Purple were relentless, every spare moment spent trying to find signatures. We got lots of celebrity retweets but the signature count was not building quickly enough.
Then something fabulous happened – Coronation Street ran a pancreatic cancer storyline which did great things for awareness and we hoped it might also help our plea for signatures! The amazing Julie Hesmondhalgh, who played the character Hayley Cropper, got in touch and wanted to help our cause. The support Julie gave us was beyond anything we could have hoped for – she gave the epetition so many mentions and she truly walked beside us every step of the way.
Despite all of this, with just three weeks to go to the deadline, we still needed 48,000 signatures. It had taken 49 weeks to find 52,000 signatures – how on earth were we going to find 48,000 in just 3 weeks! But, amazingly, we did. The passion of Team Purple and Julie Hesmondhalgh, the power of social media and the kindness of many celebrities getting involved helped us hit 100,000 signatures with 3 days to spare!
You can watch the debate here!
On 8 September 2014, Nic Dakin MP led our Debate together with Eric Ollerenshaw and we had a momentous day in Parliament. The following day Lorraine Kelly kindly invited us on her show to talk about the Debate.
Team Purple have continued to work tirelessly raising much needed awareness and funds. This new stage of the #HopeIsContagious campaign is centred on a badge which we hope will help spread awareness even further.
As there is no Government backed awareness campaign for pancreatic cancer, we’ve decided to use this campaign to spread symptom awareness because Early Diagnosis is key. Unless a patient is found at an early, operable stage, they have very little chance of surviving long term.