Bowel cancer charity to fight bottom dog status

A bowel cancer charity is attempting the seemingly impossible task of making its cause sexy in a bid to raise £2m.

To date, bowels have been unable to capture the public's imagination in the same way as other parts of the body afflicted by cancer.

This is reflected in the various charities' incomes: Bowel Cancer UK, formerly Colon Cancer Concern, is operating on £1.5m a year, a fraction of the sum raised by many breast cancer charities.

But Stephen Roose-Jones, head of fundraising at Bowel Cancer UK, has devised a plan that he believes will do for bowel cancer what the Race for Life has done for breast cancer.

He is launching a campaign centred on 'fun' fundraising ideas with a backside theme.

His ideas include an auction to win 40 prizes, such as the chance to have your bottom photographed alongside former Rear of the Year winners or the opportunity to sit alongside a pilot. Peter Kenyon, chief executive of Chelsea FC, has offered one winning bottom a place at his executive dining table.

Roose-Jones also plans to ask offices and restaurants to participate by charging people £1 to sit down on 7 April, when the campaign is being launched.

"People don't like to talk about their bowels," said Roose-Jones, who previously raised money for Macmillan Cancer Relief and who himself has been treated for bowel cancer.

"But bums can be funny. I believe I've hit on an idea that will create significant interest in bowel cancer and which will be as big as the Race for Life - eventually."

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