With great power comes great responsibility; I’d like to think that’s true for super heroes and moustaches. The month began with smooth faces and an eagerness to raise awareness for men’s health. For this MoBro, Movember is about so much more than just growing a magnificent moustache, as cancer has impacted my life too many times. 2013 is the fourth year that ZE and I have participated in Movember, and I grow to honor the family members and friends I’ve lost over the years. While I think we can all agree the moustaches are cool (you can read that as “moustaches are awful,” if you wish), one only has to look at facts about men’s health to get a full understanding of the vision behind Movember.
Using scary stats to motivate people is not how we roll at Movember, but the facts below are too startling to ignore:
• The average life expectancy for men is four to five years less than women.
• 1 in 4 Canadians are expected to die from cancer.
• 1 in 7 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetime.
• In 2013 alone, 23,600 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed in men and 3,900 will lose their battle.
• 1 in 4 cancer patients experience clinical depression
• Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in Canadian men between the ages of 15 and 29.
• Tobacco is the single most preventable cause of cancer in Canada, responsible for over 37,000 deaths annually.
• 1 in 11 men will develop lung cancer.
• While not as common, men can get breast cancer. About 200 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed among men and about 55 men will die from the disease.
• More than 75,000 cases of non-melanoma skin cancer are diagnosed each year in Canada.
• An estimated 6.6% of the population over the age of 20 has diabetes in Canada.
• Approximately 6 million Canadian adults have high blood pressure, representing 19% of the adult population; 17% are unaware of their condition. Even 30 year olds can have high blood pressure!
• 1 in 5 Canadians will personally experience a mental illness each year
• Four times as many men commit suicide compared with women
Led by our MoSista Gulnazz Ahuja, a team of men from nearly all departments at ZE raised $2,738, an all-time high for ZE; this achievement could not have been reached if not for the hard work of Lovelene Chhina, who raised more than half of those funds. While the majority of the team wasn’t as successful at fundraising as Lovelene, they should still be proud of the funds and efforts put in.
One of the challenges facing many MoBro’s these days is that potential donators now have multiple friends or relatives participating in Movember, and must choose to either support only one, or split a donation among many. I decided to take on this challenge by having a bake sale, and sold some amazing homemade strawberry cupcakes baked by my wife. In the end I raised $232 in cupcake donations ranging from $4 to $50. I can’t thank my co-workers enough for helping support this cause by either donating or joining in!