Renowned rugby loose forward Ardie Savea has joined Breast Cancer Foundation NZ (BCFNZ) as an ambassador, spurred by the loss of his grandmother to breast cancer in 2005. He is BCFNZ’s first male ambassador.
On his new role, Savea says, “BCFNZ does an incredible job of educating and supporting women at a time when they need it most, and I’m only too happy to do what I can to help them help people like my grandmother.”
Evangelia Henderson, chief executive at Breast Cancer Foundation NZ, says she is excited that Ardie has accepted the Foundation’s offer. “We’ve known Ardie since he designed special Wellington Lions rugby jerseys in 2015 commemorating his grandmother and family,” she says. “He’s a highly respected sportsman who will be a valuable voice in raising breast cancer awareness amongst Kiwis everywhere.”
More than 3,000 women and around 25 men are diagnosed with breast cancer in New Zealand each year, and over 600 Kiwis die. “Early detection is key,” says Mrs Henderson. “Ardie’s high profile will help us get the message out to even more Kiwis to be breast aware at any age and have regular mammograms from the age of 40.”