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As preparations ramp up towards the third edition of the purpose-led pink rugby game, the Vodacom Bulls continue their call for all sport fans to rally behind the cause and be part of the historic day, as they, alongside their Southern rivals, the Cell C Sharks, use the North vs South derby as a platform to help spotlight the fight against breast cancer.

On Sunday 30 October, the battle lines will be drawn, but this time around for a cause more than just the points on the board. The two South African franchises will come together in support of a common cause, draping all of Loftus Versfeld, in pink.

Edgar Rathbone, Blue Bulls Company CEO, says the #BullsHeard has a unique opportunity to use passion and loyalty to fuel support for a worthy cause.

“As the Vodacom Bulls family, we value the work of organisations like CANSA and PinkDrive, bringing critical intervention across our communities. We are calling on all our supporters, Gauteng residents and surrounds, to come and join us as we make this South African rugby’s biggest drive to support breast cancer awareness, showing that “United We Care” for each other.”

Fans still have the incredible opportunity to show their own support by uploading a photo of someone (or themselves) who has faced or is fighting breast cancer to, and it could feature on the back of the limited-edition match-day jerseys of both the Vodacom Bulls and Cell C Sharks for their 30 October clash.

“We are honoured as a community in rugby to be able to show our support for breast cancer awareness. The cricket community showed just how powerful a symbol of hope sport can be. Rugby fans are amongst the most passionate supporters in sport, and this is an opportunity for us to also honour the brave men and women who are struggling or have suffered from breast cancer,” said Michelle van Eyden, Head of Sponsorship for Vodacom.

The message of awareness and early detection of breast cancer is a key focus area for both CANSA and PinkDrive.

CEO of CANSA, Elize Joubert says the organisation plays an active role in educating about cancer symptoms, warning signs and ways to lower the risks of cancer.

“With the support of the Vodacom Blue Bulls, we can ensure more cancer screenings with our mobile health clinic and promote early detection, which is important and can lead to better treatment outcomes. Supporting an initiative such as this will also help us continue with our research, care and support programmes and health education towards cancer-free generation one day.”

Both CANSA and PinkDrive are registered NPOs providing life-saving free screening services to the medically uninsured to test for breast and cervical cancer. Worldwide studies have shown that early detection and diagnosis lead to far more effective treatment of breast cancer and can play a significant role in prolonging life.

With their mobile health clinics, CANSA and PinkDrive are making a significant impact with thousands of screenings conducted nationwide annually, and they are successfully bridging the gap between traditional health services and the most medically vulnerable.

The support from the sport industry in promoting this awareness is vital to their work.

“Sport is an amazing platform to be able to create awareness and from a fundraising perspective, sport people are generally very giving. They literally keep the wheels of our trucks turning. It also helps us to keep telling people to never give up. Never give up hope because there is help,” said Noelene Kotschan, CEO and Founder of PinkDrive.

Fans are encouraged to get involved, by purchasing their tickets from ticketpro, for as little as R25.00.

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