NEW YORK: CureSearch National Childhood Cancer Foundation is planning an outreach campaign centering on Miss America 2005, Deidre Downs, who has chosen childhood cancer as her signature cause.
The group announced today that Downs has taken on the role of official CureSearch spokesperson for the length of her reign and will be making periodic appearances in that capacity. A PSA featuring a voiceover from actress Jodie Foster was distributed to 28,000 media outlets nationwide in October and are expected to begin running this month.
The spots provide information for families dealing with childhood cancer and direct viewers to CureSearch's new website at www.curesearch.org.
As per tradition, the Miss America winner must pick a platform to champion during her run.
Susan Weingram, SVP at CureSearch's AOR, Rubenstein Associates, said that CureSearch approached Downs after learning she was an aspiring pediatrician.
CureSearch does not currently have additional PR plans outside of the PSAs, but Miss Americas travel extensively during their tenure to advocate for their championed cause. Weingram and Sally Charney, director of public education for CureSearch, said that Downs would spread the message through her official duties for the Miss America organization.
The ads were created pro bono by Y&R, a division of Young & Rubicam Brands. The Ad Council, which has adopted child welfare as a primary commitment, distributed the PSAs as part of a three-year partnership with CureSearch.
"Her platform is childhood cancer and she's supporting the campaign as well as spreading the message," Charney said.
Charney said the goal of the campaign is to spread awareness and inform those affected by childhood cancer that they have a resource to go to.