Local health staff are encouraging bowel cancer awareness in the Clutha district.

A group of staff from Clutha Health First in Balclutha recently participated in the national ‘‘Move your Butt’’ campaign to raise funds for bowel cancer awareness month in June.

The team accomplished 770km of exercise over 284 hours using local facilities and raising money through exercising and local sponsorship, raising over $2400 for the cause.

Clutha Health First chief executive Sharon Mason said the team became ‘‘competitive for a good cause’’ throughout the month by walking and exercising at local gyms.

‘‘Bowel cancer is the second-highest cause of cancer death in New Zealand.

‘‘It kills as many of us as breast and prostate cancer combined and can affect anyone at any age,’’ Mrs Mason said.

‘‘We have a strong focus on health and safety at our work, so raising the money and putting the hard yards in was worth it for a great cause.’’

Nlw1Z Bowel Cancer launched this year’s fundraiser, Move your Butt, to encourage New Zealanders as individuals or as a team to get more exercise, even as little as a 10-minute-a-day walk.

‘‘Exercising more and eating well are proven to help prevent bowel cancer, and we hope more people become aware of the message we’re sending.’’