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Lowe Roche Births a Community of Fear Fighters for Canadian Cancer Society

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Fundraiser challenges people to face their fears

Lowe Roche Births a Community of Fear Fighters for Canadian Cancer Society

From spiders to heights, to singing in public, no fear is too big or too small to be included in the Fearless Challenge, a new online fundraiser launched today by the Canadian Cancer Society.

The Fearless Challenge, an integrated campaign centred on a website at, created by advertising agency Lowe Roche, is daring anyone and everyone to confront their fears to help those living with cancer do the same. It’s an exciting new signature fundraiser from the Canadian Cancer Society, and a different way for the charity to frame the narrative around cancer.

The goal of the Fearless Challenge is to change perceptions around cancer by creating hope through fundraising that the disease will become more manageable in the future.

“The Canadian Cancer Society is committed to creating a world where no Canadian fears cancer, but we are not there yet,” says Mike Kirkpatrick, Director, Marketing for the Cancer Society in Ontario. “We know that more work needs to be done because a cancer diagnosis is still one of the scariest things a person can face.” 

By pledging to confront their own fears, no matter how big or small, for a dollar amount they decide, Canadians can raise funds to help people living with cancer do the same. It’s a strategically pivotal and differentiating initiative that goes beyond the typical event-type effort to open up a new approach to fundraising. 

Due in large part to donor-funded research, some cancers are becoming more manageable, but no less frightening. The good news is more people are surviving cancer than ever before. Today, over 60% of Canadians diagnosed with cancer will survive compared to about 25% in the 1940s when the Canadian Cancer Society began funding research.

The campaign has launched with a number of celebrity endorsers and participants. Endorsers include actor Jason Priestley of Beverly Hills 90210 and Call Me Fitz, Canadian sports commentator and former NFLer Jesse Palmer, Shannon & Sophie Tweed-Simmons of Gene Simmons Family Jewels and Shannon & Sophie, and Hedley bassist and cancer survivor Tommy Mac. 

“I think the Fearless Challenge is a new and exciting way to reframe the conversation around cancer,” says Mac. “It's important that we look at fear, because it's something that hasn't really been touched upon before as a way of fundraising. Looking into the mind of a person who has faced their worst fear, 'cancer' is the most fearful terrible word out there, so I think it's a new interesting way to re-examine things.”

A number of celebrities will also participate by facing their fears: Mike Bradwell, wide receiver for the Toronto Argonauts, will face his fear of heights by doing the CN tower walk; actor Natalie Brown, one of the stars of FX's new series The Strain, will face her fear of swimming in a cold dark lake; actor Italia Ricci, star of the new TV series Chasing Life, will face her fear of giving up control while she sits as a passenger as her boyfriend, Robbie Amell, starring in  CTV’s The Flash, drives a racecar; and actor Jonathan Keltz, of Reign and Entourage, will face his fear of spiders.

Participating in the Fearless Challenge is easy. All it takes is three simple steps: Film a short video stating the fear you’d like to overcome and for how much, register at and ask your friends and family for donations. Once you’ve hit your fundraising goal, upload a video proving that you’ve faced your fear.

Lowe Roche partnered with their IPG sister agencies Lowe Profero and UM to develop the Fearless Challenge The fundraiser is being promoted through social media, by radio ads, wild postings, TTC and elevator screen ads, as well as pre-roll video and website banner ads, which will all be in market to end of September. 

Money raised through the Fearless Challenge will fund more life-saving cancer research and help patients and their families through support services, ensuring that no one living with cancer has to face it alone.


Client: Canadian Cancer Society

Vice President, Development & Marketing: Lesley Ring

Senior Manager, Marketing & Development: Sue Dalos

Senior Manager, Advertising & Production: Mickey Spinosa

Director, Marketing: Mike Kirkpatrick

Creative Agency: Lowe Roche

Creative Director: Mark Mason

Creative Director: Jane Murray

Associate Creative Director: Jesse Pearson

Copywriter: Jeremy Richard

Designer: Ben Coles

Account Director: Katie Musgrave

Account Manager: Hillary Pitcher

Director of Production: Beth MacKinnon

Agency Producers: Sumit Ajwani, Jonny Pottins

Strategic Planners: Jonathan Daly, Laura Davis-Saville

Still Photography: Incision Creative

Photographer: Mark Luciani

Producer: Jesse Hunt

Production Company: Descendants

Director: James Arthurs

Executive Producer: Tasha Litt

Line Producer: Todd Huskisson

Digital Production: Lowe Profero

Digital Fundraising Agency: Charity Dynamic

Editorial: Saints

Editor: Red Barbaza

Music: “We Are the Brave” by Rebel Coast

Sound Design: Boombox

Radio Production: Pirate

Track Director: Chris Tait

Editor: Jared Kuemper

Producer: Kate Goora-Fried

Media Agency: UM

VP Client Partner: Helen Galanis

Manager, Connection Planning: Rachael McNally

Digital Strategist: Eden Pettigrew ​

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Categories: Charity, Corporate, Social and PSAs

MullenLowe US, Wed, 06 Aug 2014 08:21:24 GMT