Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Educating Blacks About Prostate Cancer With an Innovative Format

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Nationwide --  The Prostate Health Education Network (PHEN) is currently debuting its Broadway-style stage play Daddy's Boys at national churches, venues and theaters around the country to packed houses and sell-out crowds. The show focuses on the often-overlooked prostate cancer crisis in the African American community, and collaborates with award wining playwright Garrett Davis, who uses humor and music-laden dramas to bring awareness to major health issues facing minorities.
"We know that African-American men are more than twice as likely than men of all other races to die from prostate cancer," said Thomas A. Farrington, founder and president, the Prostate Health Education Network. "This innovative format has shown strong appeal to men and women entertaining and educating audiences, enabling us to reach thousands with knowledge to help save more lives," according to Farrington, an 18-year prostate cancer survivor.

Daddy's Boys uses a highly entertaining infotainment approach to tell the story about a widowed father and his sons, who are in a fractured relationship, coming together when faced with prostate cancer. The play has been running for almost a year and in that time has received outstanding reviews and feedback from sold-out audiences in Atlanta, Georgia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Glendale, Maryland; Richmond, Virginia; Detroit, Michigan; Greensboro, Fayetteville and Winston-Salem, North Carolina; and Jacksonville, FL.

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PHEN is touring Daddy's Boys nationally with the support of partners including Amgen, Astellas, Bayer, Genentech, Genomic Health, Janssen Oncology and Pfizer Oncology. The nonprofit works with its network of church partners to host and promote the play within their communities. Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other partners, including AARP are also joining in PHEN's efforts to raise prostate cancer awareness.

The performances are free of charge to the public with tickets made available online and through PHEN community partners.

Typically the day will begin with an educational workshop and luncheon, including presentations by top prostate cancer medical leaders within each city, and end the day with the showing of the Daddy's Boys stage play. So far, this innovative model is working.

Surveys and reviews have shown:

• Over 50% of attendees have been personally affected by prostate cancer, meaning they have either had a loved one diagnosed with prostate cancer or been diagnosed themselves;

• Community leaders and politicians who attend often present PHEN with proclamations or certificates vowing to change or introduce legislation in their jurisdictions to increase prostate cancer educational and outreach efforts;

• The PHEN Prostate Cancer Survivor Network is growing nationally. PHEN recruits and mobilizes prostate cancer survivors, and their loved ones, nationwide to provide education and awareness outreach within their communities. This survivor network, which stretches across the country, is the foundation for much of PHEN's grassroots community efforts.

• Reviewers leave comments and post social media videos, stating feedback, such as "Oh the show was excellent! And they gave me a lot of information. I'm going to talk to my brother-in-law tonight about going to get a check-up if I have to take him myself." --Daddy's Boys Atlanta Audience Member.

"We have found an effective format that is working and we couldn't be prouder of all of our churches, sponsors, community leaders, partners, survivors and volunteers for helping to make this come together. We are increasing prostate health knowledge within African American communities on a much larger scale with the ultimate goal being a reduction in the Black prostate cancer death rate," said Farrington.

The next tour stops for Daddy's Boys includes Birmingham, Alabama on May 18th and Milwaukee, Wisconsin on June 8, 2019. More information and tickets are available at

Churches and other organizations that may be interested in hosting Daddy's Boys should email PHEN at

About PHEN
The Prostate Health Education Network (PHEN) is the nation's leading prostate cancer patient education and advocacy organization addressing the needs of African American families and partners with churches across the country with its educational outreach efforts. PHEN is a Boston-based 501c(3) non-profit organization, founded in 2003. Prostate cancer is the leading cause of cancer among all men. Black men are diagnosed at a rate 60% higher with a death rate 130% higher than men of all other racial and ethnic groups. PHEN provides education and awareness programs with its community partners and online towards eliminating this disparity. Learn more at

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Posted by community events coordinator, Nzinga Lonstein Austin, is a prolific blogger who writes on the entertainment industry and issues for people with developmental and physical challenges.

She is presently in high school looking to have a career in video, film, and media. You can see more of her entertainment writing on Lonstein Movies.

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