Australia’s Bowel Cancer Awareness

Australia’s Bowel Cancer Awareness


In Australia, bowel cancer (also known as colorectal cancer) is one of the most common types of cancer and the second most common cause of cancer-related death. Bowel cancer affects the colon or rectum, and can cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, changes in bowel habits and rectal bleeding. While the disease can affect people of all ages and is more common in people aged over 50 years, it is also highly preventable and curable if detected early.

To raise awareness of bowel cancer and encourage early detection, June is recognised as Bowel Cancer Awareness Month in Australia. This initiative is led by Bowel Cancer Australia whose mission is to reduce the incidence, impact and mortality of bowel cancer through research, education, advocacy and support.

Bowel Cancer Awareness Month aims to educate the community about the importance of bowel cancer screening and the signs and symptoms of the disease, and to reduce the impact of bowel cancer on individuals and the community. During Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, Bowel Cancer Australia encourages people to participate in activities and initiatives to raise awareness and support the cause, including:

  • Getting checked for bowel cancer – Bowel cancer can often be detected early through regular screening. Bowel Cancer Australia encourages people aged over 50 years, or those with a family history of the disease, to speak with their doctor about getting screened. The National Bowel Cancer Screening Program also invites people aged 50 to 74 years to screen for bowel cancer using a free test at home.

In addition to regular screening, it is important to remember that bowel cancer and many other types of cancer can often be prevented through healthy lifestyle choices, such as maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly. You can find more information about the steps you can take to prevent and detect bowel cancer early at Bowel Cancer Australia.

  • Holding a fundraiser – Bowel Cancer Australia relies on donations to fund its research and support services. Individuals can hold fundraising events, such as a morning tea, trivia night or fun run, to raise awareness about bowel cancer and raise funds to support Bowel Cancer Australia.

Red Apple Day is Bowel Cancer Australia’s Annual Giving Day and encourages people to support the charity’s work. This year, Red Apple Day will fall on Wednesday 21 June, and would be the perfect time to host an apple-themed event to raise awareness about bowel cancer and raise funds for Bowel Cancer Australia. You can find more information about how to host a fundraising event for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month and Red Apple Day here.

  • Wearing a ribbon – Bowel Cancer Australia distributes ribbons to raise awareness about bowel cancer. Individuals can buy and wear a ribbon to support the cause.

You can also show your support for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month and Red Apple Day by purchasing a Virtual Bowel Cancer Awareness Ribbon. You can send or dedicate a ribbon to others, or pin your ribbon to the Virtual Apple Tree.

Bowel Cancer Australia also provides support to individuals affected by bowel cancer, including patients, caregivers and family members, through a range of support services, such as access to telehealth advice from bowel care nurses, nutritionists and social workers, as well as online patient resources. Check the Bowel Cancer Australia website to learn more or call the Bowel Cancer Australia Helpline on 1800 727 336.