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ESPN Launches New ‘Cancer Is’ Campaign in Celebration of the Eleventh Annual V Week

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In its 11th consecutive year, ESPN’s V Week for Cancer Research will begin on Tuesday, Nov. 28, across all domestic ESPN platforms, with additional programming and highlights continuing through December 8. The initiative will drive awareness and donations to the V Foundation for Cancer Research. All proceeds raised will go directly to cancer research and related programs. This year ESPN is launching a new campaign ‘Cancer Is’, which focuses on capturing each person’s journey and experience as a patient, caretaker, researcher or individual affected by cancer. Last year, the V Week initiative raised a record $3.8 million, bringing the ten-year total of contributions to more than $17.7 million.

“As we approach our annual V Week, we can reflect on the tremendous progress we have made every year”, said John Skipper, ESPN President. “All of us have had too many reminders of cancer’s devastating effects and therefore the critical nature of the V Foundation’s cause. During V Week, we take pride in sharing heartfelt stories and inspiring journeys, while documenting the wide-ranging challenges that our friends and loved ones face.”

V Week will begin on Giving Tuesday, Nov. 28, a global giving day where families, businesses and charities around the world come together for a common purpose: to celebrate generosity and give. On Wednesday, Nov. 29, at 7:00 p.m. ET a 15-minute roadblock presentation of former NC State coach-turned ESPN commentator Jim Valvano’s 1993 legendary ESPYS speech will air. It will be offered simultaneously on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic, ESPN3, ESPN Deportes, SEC Network, Longhorn Network and  ESPN Radio. The roadblock will be streaming live on all networks listed and fans can also access it on demand via ESPN3 replay. A captioned version will also be available on the ABC SuperSign in Times Square, HearstLive, New York City Disney Store and within Disney Resorts.

Vignettes and special PSAs will air throughout V Week during live events such as NBA, NFL and college football and basketball, studio programming, ESPN Radio shows and ESPN Deportes. Across all ESPN networks, the Bottomline scroll will encourage viewers to join ESPN and the V Foundation in the fight against cancer by visiting v.org/donate. The message will also run in Spanish on ESPN Deportes.

Also new this year to V Week is ESPN’s collaboration with Twitch—the world’s leading social video service and community for video game culture. ESPN and Twitch will be hosting a 24-hour live streaming marathon on Twitch (twitch.tv/espnesports). The event aims to inform the gaming community of the V Foundation’s mission to eradicate cancer through Jim Valvano’s encouragement to laugh, think and cry each day. The 24-hour event is being held on November 28-29 starting at 3 p.m. from Los Angeles. Further details on personalities who will join the stream will be announced on a later date.

The Jimmy V Men’s and Women’s Basketball Classics Presented by Corona Extra will begin starting with the Women’s classic on Sunday, Dec. 3, followed by the Men’s classic on Tuesday, Dec. 5, all airing live on ESPN.

  • December 3: 6 Notre Dame vs. No. 1 UConn– 4 p.m. – XL Center  Hartford, Conn.
  • December 5: 5 Villanova vs. No. 17 Gonzaga – 7 p.m. – Madison Square Garden

Syracuse vs. UConn – 9 p.m.- Madison Square Garden

About the V Foundation for Cancer Research
The V Foundation for Cancer Research is dedicated to declaring victory over cancer.  It was founded in 1993 by ESPN and the late Jim Valvano, legendary North Carolina State basketball coach and ESPN commentator. Since 1993, the Foundation has funded more than $200 million in cancer research grants nationwide. It awards 100 percent of all direct cash donations to cancer research and related programs. Due to generous donors, the Foundation has an endowment that covers administrative expenses.  The Foundation awards peer-reviewed grants through a competitive awards process vetted by a Scientific Advisory Committee.  For more information on the V Foundation, please visit www.jimmyv.org.

About ESPN Corporate Citizenship
ESPN believes that, at its very best, sports uplifts the human spirit. Its corporate citizenship programs use power of sport to positively address society’s needs through strategic community investments, cause marketing programs, collaboration with sports organizations and employee volunteerism, while also utilizing its diverse media assets. For more information go to www.espn.com/citizenship.

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Contact: Belen Michelis, ESPN, (860) 766-1425, [email protected]