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April 6, 2015

Brian Richards bowls for sixty hours to beat breast cancer

For many people New Year’s Day means a public holiday, resolution setting and staying cool from the summer sun. Brian Richards isn’t most people. With charity in his heart and “lots of coffee” in his veins, Brian’s New Year’s Day was the start of a sixty hour lawn bowling marathon to raise money for breast cancer research. As a dedicated member of his bowls club, Brian saw many women at the club get diagnosed with breast cancer, the struggles they faced and the families they left behind. Still grieving about the passing of his wife from stroke, Brian was motivated to do something in honour of the women in his life, and for the seven Australian women who die from the disease every day.



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As Brian puts it, “I just wanted to set myself a goal and do something meaningful. After my wife passed away in April, I was sort of vegetating for a few months, living off junk food and putting on weight until I decided to go the gym, but that got boring after a couple of weeks. Rather than give it up, I thought I’d set myself a goal and try and get really fit by doing something for a worthwhile charity.”

Starting at 6am on 1 January, Brian, affectionately known as Tiger to his friends, rolled the first bowl at Melbourne’s Glenroy Bowls Club. Though he got through the first night with ease, it was the second night that was the toughest. Battling the heat and lack of sleep Brian completed the final end of this epic fundraiser at 6pm on 3 January.

By the time the applause had subsided, Brian’s fundraising efforts totalled an impressive $20,000 for the National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF). When asked what his wife’s thoughts would he been, Brian joked “I wouldn’t be allowed, she was the boss so I wouldn’t have any chance of doing it if she was here.” Here at NBCF we are constantly impressed by similar stories of support and fundraising efforts like Brian’s. Without this money, we couldn’t fund research to help stop the predicted 15,600 Australians who will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015.

Thinking of running your own fundraising event? Here are our tips for fundraising events that work.

  • Host an afternoon tea
  • Have a pink sports day at your local club and ask everyone to make a donation to participate
  • Get your friends to sponsor you or your team in a fun run or walk
  • Hold a movie night
  • Get sponsored to do a head shave
  • Get creative and sell your handmade wears for a donation
  • Organise a sausage sizzle
  • Hold a car boot sale

How can you get involved?

Pledge to donate, fundraise or volunteer your support at Every dollar raised helps take NBCF closer towards our goal of towards zero deaths from breast cancer by 2030.