PRowl Public Relations, Temple University's student-run public relations firm, is working with their client Ride Hard, Breathe Easy (RHBE) by taking charge of the lung cancer awareness organization's communication efforts. The firm promotes the organization's cycling and fundraising events and increases its social media engagement. Now, the firm is helping the organization with another goal: forming lasting partnerships with local hospitals and health centers. Most recently, PRowl students are responsible for bringing media attention to the organization's recent donations of $20,000 to Fox Chase Cancer Center and $20,000 to Temple Hospital.
RHBE was started in 2017 by John Matthews, founder and chief strategist of KWM Consulting whose mother died of lung cancer in 2011. RHBE strives to end the stigma behind lung cancer with its fundraising and social media campaigns and has received national recognition for its work. Since its founding, the organization has raised more than $350,000 for lung cancer causes and awareness.
PRowl took on RHBE as a client in 2018 and quickly helped it gain even more visibility. The firm has coordinated several of the organization's successful fundraisers like Wine Hard, Breathe Easy and RHBE Classic, a multi-day cycling event.
RHBE's $40,000 donation to Fox Chase and Temple Hospital is aimed at helping local lung cancer patients with their treatment. In a PRowl press release, Lisa Etkins, a social worker at Fox Chase who serves on RHBE's advisory board, says "Our patients are trying to get their treatments in a timely fashion, but the financial burden has changed significantly. We are able to pay car payments, rent and phone bills, and support transportation costs with this donation."
"PRowl was instrumental in supporting RHBE's donation efforts," says Gregg Feistman, faculty advisor of PRowl. "The account team's level of professionalism, dedication and hard work paid off tangibly, enabling RHBE to take another step towards realizing their goal of ending the stigma around lung cancer. I couldn't be more proud of the account team helping to make this reality happen."
Alexis Levant, a senior public relations student and Krista Yerk, a senior advertising student, are the current account executives of PRowl's RHBE account team. PRowl's strategies to spread the word about RHBE's recent donation earned the story coverage in the Northeast Times.
"We came up with this plan together because we could see how newsworthy it was and how beneficial it would be to the community and to PRowl. And working to get student awareness and understanding for the fact that we too are going to be great PR practitioners one day — and letting Ride Hard believe in us was the first, biggest step in all of this," says Levant.
Yerk believes that the donation epitomizes Matthews' vision as the RHBE's founder and president. The donation is also a part of his goal to raise $1 million for lung cancer causes.
"John is so passionate about the mission," Yerk says. "He founded the organization in memory of his mother and I think he's really ready to partner with a lot of hospitals in the region."
RHBE is currently hosting its cycling Ride Hard, Breathe Easy Challenge for the entirety of November, which is lung cancer awareness month. The organization also earned a spot on the 2020 Top Rated Great Nonprofit list.