Mustaches for men’s health

Student-run health group aims to create awareness on campus

Students are encouraged to post a picture of their mustaches as part of the campaign.
Students are encouraged to post a picture of their mustaches as part of the campaign.
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Today marks the start of Be Well Do Well’s MoContest, a campaign seeking to raise awareness about men’s health on campus.

The contest is being run through Facebook by the Peer Health Educator Social Media team, a faction of Health Counselling and Disability Services (HCDS), which oversees Be Well Do Well.

The group is encouraging students to post pictures of their mustaches on the Facebook group and vote for their favourite pictures.

The Peer Health Educator Program is a volunteer group comprised of around 30 student volunteers.

Run through HCDS, the volunteers work to promote health and wellness strategies to students around campus.

Sean Doherty, the Social Media Team’s co-leader, said men’s health is often ignored by university-aged men.

“Men’s health is a topic that often goes unmentioned but is extremely important to university students, which is why we decided to run the campaign,” Doherty, ArtSci ’15, told the Journal via email.

“We don’t often talk about testicular self-examinations or substance abuse every day.”

The campaign celebrates the month of “Movember” which raises awareness surrounding men’s health issues, like prostate and testicular cancer, as men grow facial hair in support.

“What is great about ‘Movember’ is that it starts the conversation about men’s health, but it’s also fun,” Doherty said.

The three contestants who post pictures with the highest number of “likes” will win either a gift basket from DrugSmart Pharmacy, a tank-top or a water bottle from Tricolour Outlet.

The contest is geared towards self-identifying males and seeks to raise awareness of health rsources on campus.

It will also feature health promotional materials.

“We hope this campaign will highlight men’s health issues that aren’t usually discussed and will encourage self-identified males on campus to be more passionate about their health,” Doherty said.

Other student groups such as Relay for Life and ASUS Cancer Triad are also running Movember projects on campus.

“There is currently a competition [calledBig Moustache on Campus] between all the Canadian campuses to raise the most money for [Movember],” he said.

“The school that raises the most funds will get [to host] a talk from Chris Hadfield.”

The Big Moustache on Campus challenges campuses to raise money for “Movember” with the hopes of winning their school a visit from the retired Canadian astronaut.

The challenge is supported by, but not affiliated with, the Peer Health Educator Program.

Hadfield was the first Canadian to walk in space and now actively supports “Movember” campaigns. Dalhousie University, in Nova Scotia, is currently in first place.

“Whether it’s a group of guys raising some money, or someone doing it on their own, people really get into ‘Movember,’” Doherty said.

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