Monday, May 12, 2014

Enter The Frankathon...

KUALA LUMPUR, 12 May 2014 – Cancer Research Initiatives Foundation (CARIF) today launched The Frankathon, a running event in support of Frank Chong, a cancer survivor who will be running the 89.28km Comrades Marathon in South Africa for the third time on 1 June 2014 to raise funds for CARIF.

Malaysian cancer survivor, Frank Chong is beating the odds and doing the seemingly impossible by committing himself to run the world’s most challenging ultra-marathon, under the banner of the ‘Be Frank’ Campaign.

The ‘Be Frank’ Campaign was launched by CARIF in May 2013 to provide an avenue to empower the public to reach out within their communities to raise funds and cancer awareness. The word ‘Frank’ is used to encourage Malaysians to be open about cancer.

“I am uniting my passion of running and my role as a cancer survivor, hoping it will be a small step towards a future free from fear of cancer. Like the 89.28km Comrades Marathon, fighting cancer is one long and tough journey. Therefore, while I am running the ultra-marathon, show your support by joining The Frankathon!” said cancer survivor and sole inspiration of the ‘Be Frank’ Campaign, Frank Chong.

In conjunction with Frank running the Comrades Marathon, CARIF is launching The Frankathon in partnership with Celebrity Fitness Malaysia, M+ Pharmacy, M&C Saatchi and Priority Communications.

“Cancer is a disease that affects thousands of families across Malaysia every day. We are launching The Frankathon to give the Malaysian public an inspiration to fight cancer by raising funds for cancer research,” said Prof. Dr Teo Soo-Hwang, Chief Executive Officer of CARIF.  “Anyone and everyone can be like Frank! Let’s ‘Outrun Cancer’ together!”

“The funds raised through The Frankathon will be used for research to identify new therapeutics for treatment of head and neck cancer, research into the discovery of new breast cancer loci and to look for pathway-specific anti-cancer compounds from our natural resources. No donation or contribution is too small or trivial, and we hope that more individuals and corporations will support CARIF towards our vision of a future free from fear of cancer,” she added.

CARIF invites both individual and organizations to participate and ‘Pledge a Kilometer’, all in the name of solidarity for cancer awareness and raise funds for the on-going research to help Malaysians beat cancer.

You can participate in The Frankathon as individuals throughout the month of May to June 2014 by running The Frankathon on your own at home, at the park, in the gym or anywhere you want! Then, ‘Donate your Kilometers’ by uploading a #selfie of yourself running on the ‘Be Frank’ Facebook ( with the tag #OutrunCancer.

Alternatively, you can also participate in the on ground event at the Main Concourse area on the Ground Floor of Bangsar Village 1 from 29 May to 31 May 2014. There are two categories for individuals, namely the Fun Run (running 2km or 10min on the treadmill) and ‘Beat the Kilometers’ (running 5km on the treadmill).

If you would like to do more to fight cancer, purchase the official The Frankathon bib at RM5 from Celebrity Fitness Malaysia (Mid Valley, Bangsar Village 1 and One Utama outlets) and run The Frankathon on your own. Otherwise, you can contribute to cancer research in Malaysia by purchasing a ‘Pledge a Kilometer’ voucher at RM100 from M+ Pharmacy, Lower Ground Floor, Bangsar Village 1 or CARIF. Voucher holders are entitled to ‘run with Frank’ on 1 June 2014 at the Main Concourse area of Bangsar Village 1 upon registration - while Frank is running the ultra-marathon in South Africa, you can ‘run with Frank’ as the Comrades Marathon is streamed live at the on ground event.

You can also participate in The Frankathon as organizations by forming a team of 20 to run the 90km Frankathon on 29 May to 1 June 2014 at in Bangsar Village 1 or you can opt to ‘Pledge a Kilometer’ and we will pick a team to run 90km on your behalf.

To find out more about The Frankathon and how you can support CARIF, please visit the ‘Be Frank’ Facebook page ( or email us at

Additional Quotes:

“Celebrity Fitness Malaysia is delighted to be a part of the The Frankathon as we believe that being healthy is the way to go in order to help beat cancer”, said Evelyn Low, Country Marketing Manager, Celebrity Fitness Malaysia, partner of The Frankathon.

“The M+ Pharmacy team believes that cancer research is the key to finding a cure for cancer and we are proud to be a part of it,” said Datin Khoo Su Min, M+ Pharmacy, another partner of The Frankathon.

For media enquiries, please contact:
Low Sook Huey
PR Executive, CARIF
Tel: 603-5639 1970

The ‘Be Frank’ Fact Sheet

(A) The ‘Be Frank’ Campaign by CARIF
Inspired by Malaysian cancer survivor Frank Chong’s courageous story of running the world’s most challenging ultra-marathon, the Comrades Marathon, CARIF launched its ‘Be Frank’ Campaign in May 2013, with the purpose of increasing cancer awareness and raising funds for cancer research.

This campaign captures the very essence of Frank himself - his dedication to support cancer research by fund raising, his courage in facing up to the cancer which has affected him and his determination to support cancer awareness by speaking up about cancer.

Be Frank: Fundraising
Join us in our fund raising efforts for cancer research. You can support Frank’s fund raising initiative, ‘The Ultimate Race for Cancer Research’ by donating or purchasing the official ‘Be Frank’ t-shirts. Or, you can ‘Be Frank’ and use your passion and interests to fund raise for cancer research. Be it a cupcake sale in the office or shaving your head to raise funds, we will support you and help you achieve your target.

Be Frank: Outreach
‘Be Frank’ and encourage your loved ones and individuals in your communities to go for early detection and educate them on the key preventive measures. Be our cancer champion, just like Frank.
Highlights in 2013:

Be Frank: Nurses Programme
We train nurses to recognize the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and to encourage women at their clinics to undergo mammogram screening. This programme targets underserved women, particularly those who work in the factories.

Be Frank: Dentist Programme
Dentists are best placed to identify the early signs and symptoms of oral cancer and to encourage patients at their clinics the importance of oral cancer screening and early detection.  Working in collaboration with the Malaysian Dental Association, the Ministry of Health and University Malaya, we are reaching out to dentists to be the first line of defence against oral cancer.

Be Frank: Hairdressers Programme
Inspired by the Barbershop programme in the USA, we have trained Malaysian hairdressers to be “Boob Buddies” and to educate their clients about breast cancer.

Be Frank: Youth Programme
Youths are our future and our best chance of preventing the future epidemic of cancer as the primary form of cancer prevention is changing lifestyles and behaviours that are known to be risk factors. We train Youths to be “Cancer Champions” through carnivals, video, posters and interactive games.  

Let’s Be Frank about Cancer Myths.
Join us in our ‘Be Frank’ about cancer myths programme. Come and champion the cause to speak out about cancer. Help us ‘Be Frank’ and spread the correct information about cancer.

(B) The Frankathon
There are two ways that you can participate in The Frankathon, as individuals or as an ogranization. Do find below the details of how you can participate:

Run The Frankathon on you own and ‘Donate your Kilometers’!
CARIF will track the total kilometers donated in support of Frank’s 90km marathon.

‘Be Frank’ Facebook
No registration, no fuss, just RUN!
Run to show your support for cancer research!
You can do it at home, at the park, in the gym, or anywhere you want.
Snap a #selfie of yourself running!
INSPIRE others to do the same.
Post it on our Facebook page (
Indicate how many kilometers you are “donating” (running) with the tag #OutrunCancer.

Celebrity Fitness Malaysia
Mid Valley, Bangsar Village 1 and One Utama outlets.
Register with us!
Purchase a Frankathon bib at RM5 each and run!
Snap a #selfie of yourself running and post it on our Facebook page

Run The Frankathon on treadmills at the ground event!
Let’s #OutrunCancer together! Register with a fee of RM10 per participant on the event day itself and running bibs will be given upon registration.

Venue: Main Concourse, Ground Floor, Bangsar Village 1
Date: 29 May – 31 May 2014
Time: 10am – 10pm
Categories: (i) Fun Run – 2km or 10 minutes
(ii) Beat the Kilometers – 5km

Run The Frankathon and ‘Pledge a Kilometer’!
Frank Chong, a cancer survivor is going to run 89.28km at the Comrades Marathon this year for cancer research. We want you to do the same! ‘Pledge a Kilometer’ for RM100 to ‘run with Frank’* while he is running the Comrades Marathon in South Africa. ‘Pledge a Kilometer’ vouchers can be purchased from M+ Pharmacy and CARIF.
Venue: Main Concourse, Ground Floor, Bangsar Village 1
Date: 1 June 2014*
Time: 10am – 10pm
Registration closing date: 26 May 2014
*Limited slots available on a first come first serve basis for registered ‘Pledge a kilometer’ voucher holders.

As a non-profit organization, we rely on the goodwill of organizations to help support the The Frankathon. Here are two easy ways your organization can ‘Be Frank’:

Sponsor a team and run The Frankathon
Main Concourse, Ground Floor, Bangsar Village 1 (29th May – 1st June 2014)**
Gather a team of 20 (it could be a team of your colleagues, friends and even family) to run a total of 90km. Upon completion, pledge a donation (i.e. RM100 for every kilometer conquered) to raise funds for cancer research. Registration can be made on the ‘Be Frank’ Facebook page ( with a registration fee of RM90 per team.
** Limited slots are available on a first come first serve basis. Terms and conditions apply.

‘Pledge a Kilometer’ for cancer research
All you need to do is simply pledge an amount (i.e. RM100 per kilometer = RM9,000) and we will pick a team to run 90km on your behalf in support of Frank’s ultimate run for cancer research.

CARIF is the only non-profit cancer research laboratory dedicated to Malaysian cancer research. CARIF’s mission is to conduct research that can lead to new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer; with the hope that such research will lead to saving lives from this terrible disease. CARIF was established by YM Tan Sri Dato Seri Tunku Ahmad Yahaya and YABhg Toh Puan Dato’ Seri Dr Aishah Ong in 2000 and officially launched by YABhg Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in 2002, concentrating first on oral cancer then expanding later to research programmes in breast, nasopharyngeal and ovarian cancers, and to natural products with anti-cancer properties. For more information, kindly visit

About the ‘Be Frank’ Campaign
The ‘Be Frank’ Campaign by CARIF is inspired by Frank Chong, 35, a cancer survivor, who has beaten the odds by surviving cancer which afflicted him when he was eleven. In 2013, CARIF launched the ‘Be Frank’ Campaign hoping to inspire cancer patients and their families to be like Frank as well as to help raise funds and awareness to spread the importance of early detection, dispelling the myths of cancer, and ultimately inspire others to help people live longer, healthier lives.

About the Comrades Marathon
The Comrades Marathon is an 89.28km ultra-marathon that takes place in South Africa every year since its first run in 1921. It is internationally recognized for the body sapping challenge it poses and the camaraderie it fosters amongst its thousands of participants. The race is run to celebrate mankind’s spirit over adversity and has been hailed as the world’s greatest ultra-marathon by the Guinness World Records.

For more information, please contact us at or call us at 603-5639 1874.

For media enquiries, please contact:
Low Sook Huey
PR Executive, CARIF
Tel: 603-5639 1970

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