Leonard Marquez and Zack Prag of BioSurplus sport their Movember mustaches at the Society For Neuroscience Meeting in San Diego, November, 2013.
Leonard Marquez and Zack Prag of BioSurplus sport their Movember mustaches at the Society For Neuroscience Meeting in San Diego, November, 2013.

The month’s almost over but there’s still time to pitch in!

Zack Prag and the BioSurplus team of Mo Bros and Mo Sistas have been working this month to support Movember, a charity that encourages men to grow mustaches during the month of November and, in the process, raise money for research into men’s health issues such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental illness.

Movember also strives to raise public awareness for these issues and the poor state of men’s health worldwide.

When it comes to health issues, I know that I have a difficult time talking about them, and would rather stick my head in the sand than deal with them head on.  Evidently, I’m not alone.

According to the Movember website, men die much younger than women, with an average life expectancy five years lower – 76 compared to 81.  There is no proven biological reason for this, however.

The organization holds that the reasons are complex, including:

  • A lack of awareness and understanding of men’s health issues
  • Men tend not to openly discuss their health and how they’re feeling
  • A reluctance to take action when men don’t feel well mentally or physically
  • Engaging is risky activities
  • A general stigma around physical and mental health

Mo Bros start clean-shaven at the beginning of every November and grow their mustaches throughout the month.  They enlist friends, family and colleagues to support their efforts and make a donation to the organization, which in turn uses the funds to support awareness efforts and research programs.

History

MovemberMovember was founded in 2003 in Melbourne Australia.  Travis Garone and Luke Slattery were having a beer together in a bar one night and the topic of the mustache as fashion statement came up.  Why not bring it back?

The two decided that they would encourage their friends to grow mustaches and raise money for charity in the process.  Inspired by a friend’s mother who was raising money for breast cancer research, they decided to focus on men’s health issues and created the guidelines for the fundraising drive, which are still in effect today.

The organization went official in 2004, and 450 participants raised $54,000 for the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia that year.  There are now over 20 participating countries and 1,127,152 official Mo Bros and Mo Sistas; $147 million were raised in 2012.

Workplaces around the world are encouraged to join the cause, and sales associate Zack Prag is leading the charge at BioSurplus.  Zack says:

“What I like about Movember is that it dresses up the very somber and serious topic of men’s health.  There is a misunderstanding out there that cancer is a singular disease and if we research and cure one form of cancer, then all others will follow suit.  That unfortunately is not the case.  The fact is that the men’s health movement is decades behind.  We need to take our cue from the women’s health movement and get out there and raise awareness.”

Click here to support the BioSurplus team and raise awareness for men’s health issues.

Watch the video below and find out more about Movember: