By Georgia Parsonson
Lee Carseldine and David Genat of the TV show Australian Survivor All-Stars have launched the 2021 Towel Challenge to support the Stroke Foundation.
A successful campaign in 2020 saw almost $50 thousand raised for research into improving treatments, researching stroke-related disabilities and ultimately saving lives impacted by stroke.
The Mother’s Day launch of 2021’s Towel Challenge is no coincidence. It honours Lee’s mother, Elizabeth, who was lost to a stroke in 2019. Not only does it accomplish this, but it also celebrates his father – himself a stroke survivor – and encourages the community to open up the conversation regarding this illness in an inspired, memorable way.
According to Lee, Stroke is a cruel disease that impacts far too many Australians.
“More than 27,400 Australians had a stroke for the first time last year. It can change lives in an instant, and families can feel the impact for many years to come.”
The Towel Challenge is a campaign intended to raise funds and awareness. It has two aspects: merchandise sales (calendars and gym towels) to raise funds for stroke research and a social media challenge to raise community awareness of the foundation and its activities.
Participants are expected to put on a towel, take a photo, and post it on Instagram in black and white. They are also encouraged to donate, fundraise, and urge their friends and family to get involved.
The Stroke Foundation’s Chief Executive Sharon McGowan is pleased to welcome the return of the Towel Challenge in 2021.
“The Towel Challenge has an incredible way of raising awareness and funds for stroke by reaching people who may not otherwise talk about the disease,” she said.
“There have been huge advancements in stroke treatment and care in recent years, but there is much more work to do.
Stroke can be prevented and it can be treated. High-quality evidence-based research will help us save more lives, reduce disability and benefit generations to come.”
David Genat hopes the 2021 Towel Challenge will be even more successful than it was in 2020.
“It is frightening to learn stroke can happen at any age. This is such an important cause to support,” he said.
Lee and David’s fundraising efforts were acknowledged at the National Stroke Awards. They won ‘Fundraiser of the Year’.
The Stroke Foundation is a national charity organisation. It partners with local communities to prevent, treat, and beat stroke. In raising awareness, educating the public, and supporting survivors, the Stroke Foundation serves as the voice of victims of stroke, their families, healthcare providers, and researchers throughout Australia.
For more information about the Towel Challenge, and to donate, fundraise, or to purchase a calendar or gym towel, visit: https://www.towelchallenge.org.au/.
For more information about the Stroke Foundation, visit: https://strokefoundation.org.au.