For the next season, true faith’s chosen good cause will be Check’Em Lads, a registered charity promoting early diagnosis of testicular cancer and appropriate early treatment.. We’ll be carrying regular Blogs here and running advertisements on-line and in the fanzine with the intention of raising awareness amongst supporters, mainly Mags but if a fan of another club happens to take a lesson from this campaign so much the better. If we help one lad it will be enough.
A Check’Em Lads volunteer tells us his own story:
It was the end of the 2011/2012 season and we’d been battered at Goodison Park by a hugely over-respected Everton side, but never mind I was off to Spain on holiday and United was off on a European tour. Before arriving in Spain I noticed I had a dull ache in my lower back and abdomen, but had no idea why. I noticed a lump on my right testicle whilst in the shower after a knock on holiday. I was worried, but thought ‘It’ll be nowt”. I went to the doctors when I arrived home and was sent for scans and after a 3-week wait was told I had testicular cancer after having my right ball removed. The cancer had spread a small amount outside of the testicle and I would require chemotherapy to kill it. I was pretty scared. The world I knew had been flipped upside down and I didn’t know anybody else who had cancer at my age, 27.
Whilst going through cancer I felt slightly alone. I was angry about not being told to check my testicles and also the lack of support for young men. This has the highest cancer rate amongst 15-40 year olds and nobody ever told me what to check for and what to do if I found something. I really just wanted advice and to talk to someone who had actually been through it. That’s when I stumbled across Phil Morris on twitter, who runs “Check’Em, Lads” charity which raises awareness and offers support to those going through cancer and post chemo support, as well.
I underwent chemotherapy treatment lasting 3 months, at 27 years old, and I’ve now been in remission for 7 months. It was a tough time, but I got through it with the help of the wonderful NHS and my family. I was still angry though. Why is this not talked about more amongst men? What; because we’re embarrassed? Possibly! If you check once a month and seek advice if you find something you’re worried about then the survival rates are over 95%. There’s no need to die of embarrassment. Testicular Cancer has amongst the highest survival rates. I was quite lucky to get it checked out quickly.
“Check’Em, Lads” now have a small army of helpers who are all unpaid survivors and we all really enjoy what we do with checkemlads.com charity. I’m running a campaign in Tyneside called ‘Howay the Nads’ going into colleges, football teams, workplaces etc with the intention of getting men between the ages of 15 and 40 to check themselves once per month after taking a bath or shower. It takes 2 minutes. If you’re worried about anything then seek advice from your GP, or if you’re going through chemotherapy then you can contact me for advice. I know what it’s really like to go through it and come out of the other side.
We all have normal day jobs but all make time for such things as awareness talks in schools and work places, offering telephone support, awareness through social media and the internet, visiting hospitals to offer help and advice to men and their families going through this illness.
I don’t want anybody to have to be as confused as I was and unsure of what to check for and what happens when having scans, blood-tests, chemo and injection’s. We should all be checking ourselves every month. Go on, what are you waiting for? Your life, in your hands.
Advice available at
or speak to firstname.lastname@example.org
or tweet me twitter @2NarMe
ALL OF THE PUBLICITY PROVIDED TO CHECK’EM LADS VIA true faith IS PROVIDED COMPLETELY FREE OF CHARGE!