Newk’s Eatery and participants in the Newk’s Cares OCRF Ready. Set. Ride!Ovarian Cycle fundraiser generated more than $117,500 for the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund (OCRF) in the inaugural year of the Newk’s Cares campaign, a drive committed to raising awareness and financial support for ovarian cancer research. The September 25 event, held in honor of Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month in Newk’s home base of Jackson, Mississippi, raised more than twice its $50,000 goal. The OCRF Ready. Set. Ride! Jackson Ovarian Cycle is the first of what will become an annual Newk’s Cares event in Jackson and other cities throughout Newk’s footprint.
“Thanks to our amazing Presenting Sponsor, Newk’s, OCRF’s Ovarian Cycle Jackson Ready. Set. Ride! was the most successful first-time ride for OCRF,” said Audra Moran, CEO of Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, the non-profit dedicated to eradicating ovarian cancer. “The phenomenal success is a testament to the dedication of Lori and Chris Newcomb and their Newk’s Eatery family to our cause. We are already envisioning the impact the longer-term Newk’s Cares campaign will have in our search for a cure.”
Jackson’s Lori Newcomb, the wife of Newk’s Eatery co-founder and CEO Chris Newcomb, launched the Newk’s Cares campaign in Newk’s restaurants after being diagnosed with stage IIIC ovarian cancer in early 2013. Inspired by her personal journey with the disease and the daunting survival rate—with only 45 percent of women surviving longer than five years after diagnosis— Lori began working to raise awareness about ovarian cancer within the national community. The Newk’s Cares movement stresses the importance of early detection and treatment which has been proven to increase the 45 percent survival rate to greater than 92 percent. By educating women about early warning signs, promoting research for a cure and sharing her story, Lori hopes to be a source of strength, inspiration and hope in the fight against ovarian cancer.
At the company’s more than 70 restaurants, from mid-August through September, Newk’s signature black cup was replaced with a teal cup in recognition of Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. Information on ovarian cancer’s early warning signs and Lori Newcomb’s personal story were also available to guests at each restaurant location and online at the Newk’s Cares website. The campaign culminated in the raising of more than $68,000 at the September 25 OCRF’s Ready. Set. Ride! Ovarian Cycle fundraiser, paired with an additional $50,000 in company gifts and matching donations, for a total donation of $117,500 to the OCRF.
“In the U.S., ovarian cancer causes more deaths than all other gynecologic cancers combined and is the 5th leading cause of cancer death in women,” said Lori Newcomb, Newk’s Cares founder. “There is no effective early screening test for ovarian cancer. Through greater awareness and research, we hope to improve early diagnosis, positively impact the prognosis for women and keep families together.”
For more information about ovarian cancer and to hear Lori’s story in her own words, visit Newk’s Cares.As a refreshing casual dining experience in a stylish atmosphere with an emphasis on freshness, flavor and unparalleled customer service, Newk’s Eatery boasts a comprehensive menu of freshly-prepared entrees with sizable portions and exceptional ingredient combinations. Rapidly expanding since the first restaurant opening in Oxford, Miss. in 2004, Newk’s currently operates and franchises 69 units in 13 states. Headquartered in Jackson, Miss., the rights to more than 100 units of the culinary-driven dining concept have been sold across the South. For more information visit newks.com, join the Roundtable Club, or follow Newk’s on Facebook and Twitter.
Ovarian Cancer Research Fund (OCRF) is the oldest and largest charity in the United States funding ovarian cancer research. Our mission is to fund scientific research that leads to more effective identification, treatment, and ultimately a cure for ovarian cancer, as well as related educational and support initiatives. Each year there will be approximately 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer in the United States, and about 15,500 women will die of the disease. Currently there is no effective means of early detection.
Since 1998, OCRF has awarded 217 grants to scientists at more than 65 leading medical centers in the U.S., an investment of nearly $60 million for ovarian cancer research. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, OCRF-sponsored investigators are developing innovative strategies for early detection; exploring the genetics that increase risk for ovarian cancer; understanding the underlying molecular biology of the disease; identifying new and better targets for treatment; and deciphering how and why ovarian cancer spreads, and how to stop it. To learn more or join us in the fight, please visit www.ocrf.org.