Movember Campaign Grows in Popularity

Photo courtesy of Charlie Llewellin, Flickr Creative Commons

Whether it sprouts in patches or in bushels, men around the world will be sporting facial hair as a part of “Movember,” also known as “No Shave November,” in an attempt to raise awareness about men’s health issues, primarily prostate cancer.

While for many men this is an excuse to grow an egregious mustache, there are people who do so in addition to campaigning for the cause via blogs, event attendance and preaching the good word of early detection and preventable illness.

The Movember Foundation, founded in 2004, laid down roots in Australia and New Zealand before branching out to the entire world and becoming the leading charitable organization with campaigns that donate to organizations like the Prostate Cancer Foundation, the Livestrong Foundation and Beyond Blue. The mantra of the foundation is to “change the face of men’s health,” an apt slogan.

Other common male diagnoses that the month-long event aims to generate awareness and donations for are depression, testicular cancer and cardiovascular disease. The illnesses themselves are not the only aspect of the campaign that require attention; “Mo Bros” encourage checkups, knowing ailments that run in the family and leading a healthier lifestyle.

Since gaining unprecedented popularity, events surrounding the primary movement have popped up on a global scale. One such happening is known as “The Moscars” in which a video contest is held and participants show their contribution to the undertaking. Another competition titled “International Man of Movember” selects one man to represent the cause and be the face of the crusade for a year.

International companies like Google Chrome, TOMS, Qantas and Royal Mail have partnered with the Movember campaign in various ways to further raise awareness about men’s health. Prominent celebrities and athletes are also common figures in the fight, usually by way of donning a mustache or donating directly to the foundation. 

Movember is not exclusive to men; women are welcome to participate by abstaining from shaving other parts of their body, most commonly their legs or underarms. Coming on the heels of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the most well-known health awareness campaign, Movember gives men and women an equal chance to continue to fight for and raise money for a cure.

Ramapo has embraced the yearly tradition and will be tabling to raise money in the Atrium throughout the month. The proceeds will go toward charities which fight diseases that most commonly affect men.

Each passing year brings more awareness, research and donations as well as mustaches and beards of all shapes and sizes, growing to trim the amount of deaths suffered by pressing illnesses.