We’re celebrating men and the brilliant, silly, caring, selfless things they do that make them great. The things we miss when they’re lost too soon.
One man dies every 45 minutes from prostate cancer. It already kills more people than breast cancer and by 2030 it’s set to be the most common cancer in the UK. But unlike breast cancer, you can’t check yourself and there’s no national screening program to help detect early-stage prostate cancer. It hasn’t gotten the attention or resources that some other cancers have.
That’s why we need to act.
Our top priority is to stop prostate cancer killing men, and we’re investing millions to fund research to transform the way prostate cancer is understood, diagnosed and treated. We have the plans and the expertise but we need thousands of supporters to stand up and make it happen.
We think men are worth saving.
Ally Clarke, 69, was diagnosed with prostate cancer back in 2010. Before he was diagnosed with prostate cancer he was unaware that black men have an increased risk of getting the disease. He is now a volunteer for Prostate Cancer UK and is on a mission to help us stop prostate cancer being a killer.
“I can’t even begin to tell you how I felt when I first found out I had prostate cancer. I was absolutely devastated. My wife and I went into a quiet room to allow the news to sink in. I was in complete shock. All I could think was ‘why me?’
After going through both hormone therapy and radiotherapy, Ally's PSA started to creep up again. Ally went on another type of hormone therapy called Enzalutamide for six months, but that also didn’t seem to work. His PSA levels at this point had reached double figures, so he underwent a type of chemotherapy called docetaxel for eight months.
At the end of 2018, Ally had a scan that showed that his prostate cancer had started to spread. Fortunately, a new trial was coming up that Ally could be a part of, called the ACE trial, that combined a new drug with Enzalutamide. Ally has just finished a month’s cycle of the trial and after his second cycle, he will have a MRI, CT and bone scan that will show if the trial is working.
He said: "Going through prostate cancer has definitely changed my whole outlook on life. I now believe that we must enjoy today and not hold back. The battles that I would normally fight, I don’t fight anymore, I just walk away. I no longer want to stress myself out."
"I have told my two sons, who are 32 and 36, about their increased risk of getting prostate cancer and the importance of discussing the disease with their doctor. As long as I am around, I will not let them forget about their increased risks and neither will their mother."
With your help we will continue to make more men aware of their risk factors and fund game-changing research, which can lead to clinical trials like Ally is on, to find more effective treatments – in particular those that target the type of cancer an individual man has and attack it.
Jan Barron's father Bill Smith was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer at the age of 81 and sadly passed away just 18 months later in March 2019.
Jan explains: “We were going on holiday with my sisters and Dad kept saying about the pain in his back and hips, to the point where we decided to take him to hospital to get him checked out and find out what was going on. He kept saying ‘I’ve got cancer’ but we didn’t believe it. We knew when the doctor came in and asked us to take a seat that it wasn’t good news.”
"We were obviously devastated when Dad was diagnosed but we felt more upset that he wasn’t diagnosed by his GP sooner. He has seven children, 20 grandchildren, 24 great grandchildren and one great great grandchild and so has left behind a big family and a huge legacy for us all."
With your help we can fund research to find better tests to spot fast-growing prostate cancer and save lives.
Chris’ dad Alan was diagnosed in 2015 at 57. Chris said: "When I first heard the news about my dad’s prostate cancer diagnosis, I was shocked and upset. However, knowing that the issue was getting sorted straight away gave me a glimmer of hope that my dad would overcome this disease."
“Prior to my dad’s diagnosis, I never knew about the hereditary risk of prostate cancer, but seeing my dad go through prostate cancer has made me more aware of this disease.”
Chris said: “Working on the TV advert for Prostate Cancer UK has been a real privilege and I am delighted to have worked on a project for such a good cause. My son also feels very excited to have been involved.”
Alan has now overcome prostate cancer. According to Chris, “Dad was one of the lucky ones.”
Peter's Dad, Pete, was diagnosed with prostate cancer aged 66 in 2011.
Peter said "When I first heard the news about my dad’s prostate cancer diagnosis, I just wanted the problem sorted straight away. I went into ‘teacher mode’ and did all I could to help dad and my family deal with this situation. I tried to be as positive as I could."
Despite initially being in denial about his diagnosis, Pete eventually opted to have surgery to remove the prostate. The surgery was successful and Pete was declared free of prostate cancer, but sadly passed away from another form of cancer in December 2017.
Peter feels that seeing his dad go through prostate cancer has changed his outlook on life.
“After seeing my dad go through prostate cancer, I try my best to speak to as many people as I can about this disease and help spread awareness. I have always been ‘pro-conversation’ about men’s health and want to help break the stigma around prostate cancer and make this a disease that men are not embarrassed to talk about. My mother and brother-in-law are also keen to let men know about this silent killer.
Peter’s brother-in-law has also been diagnosed with prostate cancer, but luckily, he was diagnosed with the disease early and had successful surgery to remove the prostate. He has been given the all-clear.
“I feel over the moon that my brother-in-law has overcome prostate cancer. He was very lucky to have caught and treated the disease when he did, as his cancer was just outside the prostate and could’ve spread. The sooner we raise the issue about prostate cancer the better, as chances of survival are much higher and my brother in-law is proof of that.”
Peter is also part of Prostate Cancer UK’s new brand campaign and features in the TV ad, proposing to his husband, Adi.
“I feel so privileged to be a part of Prostate Cancer UK’s new brand campaign on behalf of dad and my brother-in-law. Sadly, my dad died during the adoption process of my son and never got to meet him, so I want to do all I can to honour my dad’s memory and raise much needed awareness about men’s health. I am also delighted that the advert highlights diversity and that my husband and I were chosen to represent men from the LGBT community.”
What does “Men, we are with you” mean?
"Men, we are with you" is our way of saying that in everything we do we’re standing with and for men. All of our work whether that’s investing in research, supporting men who are living with the disease now, campaigning for change or raising money we undertake this work with the knowledge that we are working towards a future where no more men die of this terrible disease.
Are the words from a poem?
The words are taken from Act 2, Scene 2 of the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare.
Why are you quoting Shakespeare?
We chose these well-known words from Hamlet as they encapsulate the great things men can achieve if they are able to reach their potential. For us, this greatness, both everyday and epic, is limited by the threat of prostate cancer.
We feel these words are a powerful celebration of men and we’re using them alongside images of men doing everyday things because the grandeur of this piece alongside these images captures the main thing we want to say: that when one man is dying every 45 minutes from prostate cancer, we miss out on so many incredible moments and memories. It reminds us that this is why men are worth saving.
Why are you using the “one man dies every 45 minutes from prostate cancer” statistic?
For the most part the general public are unaware of prostate cancer and the scale of it, and we have to change that. We need to demonstrate simply and clearly how urgently we need their help to beat this disease. We tested a few different statistics with focus groups to see which had the biggest impact. ‘One man every 45 minutes from prostate cancer’ consistently provoked the biggest reaction. It was shocking and people remembered it.
This advert isn’t aimed directly at people who have prostate cancer, know someone or have lost someone. We know that seeing the ad with men doing the things that make them great or hearing the one every 45 stat may be upsetting to some people. By demonstrating that men are worth saving and men, we are with you we can show we’re here for them with our health information, Specialist Nurses and support services.