Cystic Fibrosis Ireland Starts ‘Fight to Breathe’ Film Campaign to Spotlight Patients’ Daily Struggles

Patrícia Silva, PhD avatar

by Patrícia Silva, PhD |

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Ireland's CF film campaign

Cystic Fibrosis Ireland has started a “Fight to Breathe” campaign featuring a 60-second film that will be shown at 73 movie theaters across the country for five weeks.

The awareness effort will let people know that living with cystic fibrosis literally means having to fight for every breath. The public service announcement, which focuses on Edelle Collins, a CF patient from Castleknock, invites the audience to experience the fight for themselves.

“The average person takes a breath 16 times a minute, but it’s something that for most of us we scarcely notice. It just happens,” Phillip Watt, Cystic Fibrosis Ireland’s chief executive, said in a press release. “However, a person with cystic fibrosis often has to fight to breathe. That’s their daily reality.

“And it doesn’t just naturally happen,” he said. “It often involves up to four hours every day of chest physio, inhalers, nebulizers and medications, just to make things bearable. This advertisement makes life with cystic fibrosis very real and personal, and brings home to people in a very simple, yet compelling way, how difficult it can be.”

Watt said “people with cystic fibrosis are well-known for their fighting spirit. They don’t give up, and we owe it to them to offer support in every way that we can.”

The film’s first showing was Oct. 19 at the Irish Film Institute in Dublin. The winners of the Irish Film Young Lions competition, Conor Hamill and Laura Cahill, created the campaign for the Rothco ad agency.

Boxing legend Michael Carruth helped focus attention on the campaign by walking the Purple Carpet at the premiere.

“For me, jumping into a ring and fighting for survival was a choice,” he said. “The sad reality is that for people with cystic fibrosis, there is no choice. Life is a constant battle for survival.

“That’s why I’m delighted to lend my support to this campaign, which brings home in dramatic fashion the heart-breaking reality of how challenging life for people with cystic fibrosis is,” he said. “The campaign asks us to step into their shoes and, in just 60 seconds, we soon realize how the normal breathing we perhaps take for granted is anything but normal for a person with cystic fibrosis as they struggle to deal with mucus, coughing, and shortness of breath. We have got to continue fighting the good fight when it comes to cystic fibrosis.”

Movie-goers will have the opportunity to support Cystic Fibrosis Ireland’s work by texting FightCF to 50300 to donate four euros. They can also donate online at

“Fight to Breathe” was a collaboration among Cystic Fibrosis Ireland, the Institute of Advertising Practitioners in Ireland, RTÉ, Wide Eye Media, Rothco, and the production company Pull the Trigger.

You can watch the video here: