ST. LOUIS – September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. The Empowerment Network is getting ready for its annual “Zero Prostate Cancer Walk” at Tower Grove Park.

The walk is not only a way to raise awareness, it’s also a way to celebrate prostate cancer survivors and caregivers, and to honor those who have lost their lives to the disease.

Organizers of the zero walk/run say getting your regular check-ups and blood work is vital in the fight against this disease.

“I think it’s equally important that we raise awareness through information, through education, through support through resources,” said Mellve Shahid Sr., the founder and president of the Empowerment Network. “All of this together helps us save lives.”

Shahid, a 15-year prostate cancer survivor, said the funds raised from St. Louis Run/Walk will provide support to patients through financial and emotional support programs and resources. 

So far, organizers have raised more than $53,000 towards their goal of $60,000. The funds raised from the St. Louis run/walk will provide support to patients through financial and emotional support programs and resources. Eighty-five cents of every dollar donated goes into life-saving programs.

According to the CDC, all men are at risk for prostate cancer. Out of every 100 American men, about 13 will get prostate cancer during their lifetime, and about two to three men will die of prostate cancer.

Organizers of the ZERO walk/run say getting your regular check-ups and bloodwork is vital in the fight against this disease.

“As a prostate cancer survivor, we are encouraging men in the St. Louis community to form a relationship with their doctors, to get their annual checkup, and when they’re at the doctor’s office to start that conversation with their doctors about prostate cancer screening,” said Shahid.

Experts say men over the age of 45 should get tested.

“One in eight men will receive prostate cancer at some point in their life, so that early testing is very, very important,” Kaitlin Myers, ZERO Midwest Development Manager. “PSA screenings are very important at the right age and catching it early can help save a life.”