We're really excited to announce that thousands of employees from transport operator FirstGroup have chosen us as the company’s charity partner for the next three years.
We were chosen as ‘UK Charity of Choice’ following a recent vote of 25,000 FirstGroup employees in its bus, tram and rail companies across the UK. We hope the partnership, which begins in April 2015, will raise £1million for men with prostate cancer and those close to them, through employee events, collections and promotions. The aim is to begin life saving journeys for FirstGroup’s employees, customers and the wider community to ensure they know their risk of prostate cancer and to raise awareness of the disease and the support we offer.
FirstGroup donations will pay for the production of a million ‘Know Your Prostate’ credit card-sized leaflets and other specialist information resources. The company will also provide us valuable advertising space throughout its UK bus and rail networks, which we will use to reach more men and encourage many more people to join Men United.
Mick Barker (pictured above), a train driver for First Great Western, is FirstGroup's Non-Executive Employee Director. He also chairs the company's Community First Committee, which reviewed a large number of employee-nominated charities and selected the shortlist for the company-wide vote. Mick said: “We’re very pleased to partner with Prostate Cancer UK. We saw many great applications from good causes and our employees across the UK voted in massive numbers, with many telling us they chose Prostate Cancer UK with family members they care about in mind. We are looking forward to starting our partnership with Prostate Cancer UK in April and will be raising money and awareness for this important charity over the next three years.”
Owen Sharp, Chief Executive at Prostate Cancer UK, said: “It’s great to be embarking on a new journey with FirstGroup and I’m really excited to welcome them on board. This partnership will offer us an excellent platform in transforming public awareness of a disease which affects one in eight men, and reaching them early will make a life-saving difference. The fact that FirstGroup employees voted for us shows how much men’s health, and prostate cancer in particular, is an issue, and we thank everyone who voted for us. Their support will also go a long way in helping Prostate Cancer UK reach its goals in building a movement fighting against the disease.”
The UK Charity of Choice initiative is an important part of the FirstGroup’s community strategy and we are the third charity they have adopted in this way. More than £5.5million has been raised so far for the previous partnerships with Save The Children and Macmillan Cancer Support.