‘Unprecedented support’ for Association inspired by rugby star
The MND Association has received ‘unprecedented support’ from the rugby league community and beyond following the airing of Rob Burrow: My Year With MND.
The showing of the documentary at prime time on BBC in mid-October, and its repeat before the Challenge Cup Final prompted an outpouring of support for former Leeds Rhinos player Rob Burrow.
The rugby community, led by the Rugby Football League (RFL) and Leeds Rhinos, was compelled to respond. As a result, in line with the wishes of Rob and his family, the MND Association has received donations of more than £70,000, as well as seeing record numbers of visits to its website – a more than 3000% increase on Final day compared to the previous Saturday – and social media accounts which saw more than 2,000 new followers.
Spokespeople from the MND Association have been interviewed by BBC Breakfast (twice), The Yorkshire Evening Post, The Sun, BBC Radio Leeds and Radio Cymru while other media outlets have picked up the story.
Already, more than three million people have watched the documentary either live or on iPlayer
And it’s not just ‘on the day’ support being offered. 169 people have signed up to donate regularly to the MND Association and dozens have pledged to follow in the footsteps of Rob’s wife Lindsey and tackle the Yorkshire Three Peaks to raise money.
The Association’s Director of External Affairs Chris James said:
“The support we have seen over the last week, thanks to the coverage of Rob’s story, has been unprecedented. Millions more people are now aware of MND and understand so much more about this brutal disease thanks to Rob and his family sharing their story so openly. The amount donated in his name in such a short space of time is testament to his standing within the game but also the spirit he has demonstrated since his diagnosis with MND last December. We, along with everyone in the MND community, are so incredibly grateful for everything he and those around him are doing which will make such a difference to the 5,000 people in the UK who, like Rob, are living with MND today.
“Our gratitude also goes to the RFL and the Leeds Rhinos for their part in securing this fantastic support for the Association.”