Prostate cancer

Updated 23 October 2014

Movember: time to grow a mo!

Moustache Season is now open. Movember, formerly known as November, is the month when men grow a Mo (moustache) to support men's health and raise prostate cancer awareness.

Moustache Season is now open! Movember (the month formerly known as November) is here and it’s time to grow a moustache to help raise funds and awareness for men’s health and prostate cancer in particular.

The idea for Movember was sparked in 2003 over a few beers in Melbourne, Australia. The guys behind it joked about 80's fashion and decided it was time to bring the moustache back. In order to justify their Mo's (Australian slang for moustache), they used their new looks to raise money for prostate cancer research, never dreaming that facial hair would ultimately lead to a global movement that would get men talking about a taboo subject - their health.

Since its humble beginnings in Melbourne, Movember has grown to become a truly global movement inspiring more than 1.9 million Mo Bros and Mo Sistas (women who support their guys) to participate so far.

Become a Mo Bro

A Mo Bro starts Movember clean shaven, and grows a moustache all month long, garnering support from friends and family in the form of donations. What’s more, a Mo Bro is a walking billboard for the cause as his new look opens the door for him to talk about cancers affecting men - making the moustache a symbol, much like the pink ribbon is for breast cancer

While growing a Mo is left to the guys, Mo Sistas form an important part of Movember by recruiting Mo Bros, helping to raise funds and attending Movember events.

South African Mo Bros and Sistas can join their global counterparts by donating their faces and growing their Mo’s in aid of the Cancer Association of South Africa (Cansa) and their message of detecting men’s cancers early.

In 2012 more than 30 000 South African Mo Bros and Mo Sistas registered and donated their faces to the cause for the month. These efforts resulted in R 7.18m being raised for local prostate and testicular survivorship and research programmes developed and managed with Cansa.

Globally 1.1 million Mo's registered worldwide in 2012 and R1.24bn was raised.

Quick facts about prostate cancer

    • 1 in 23 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime in South Africa
    • Men are 40% more likely to die of cancer than women
    • More than 4 000 cases of prostate cancer are diagnosed every year and over 2 500 men will die
    • In South Africa, testicular cancer is the most common cancer in young men between the ages of 15 and 35, but can occur to any male, anytime
    • Smoking is the single biggest cause of cancer in the world, with over 44 000 South Africans dying from tobacco-related diseases each year

    Be proactive

    All men should invest in their health by learning how to detect men’s cancers early - Cansa encourages men to be proactive by regular self-examination and having Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) blood tests.

    Men from age 15 to 40 years of age need to examine their testicles each month, preferably after a bath or shower, to feel for any pea-sized lumps that could indicate testicular cancer, whereas men over the age of 50 need to go for simple screening tests each year to check if they might have prostate cancer.

    Help fight cancer by growing your Mo to spread the message to detect men’s cancers early.

    Here's how

    Become a citizen of Movember by registering here (this includes Mo Bros who already registered in 2011), and raise funds by submitting your e-mail address, downloading a donation form and getting ready to grow your finest South African Mo! You can also get a team together in your workplace, sporting club or friends and compete for the finest Mo and most funds raised. Funds raised are directed to programmes run directly by Movember and Cansa.

    For more info on Movember click here.

    Join the Movember SA Facebook page or follow the Mo Bros on Twitter. You can also participate in the Moscars, a video competition to find the best Movember video and best Movember music video.  


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