By Bryan House
Were any of your colleagues or friends sporting awkward moustaches until recently? If so, it’s likely they were among the thousands of Mo-Bros taking part in the worldwide Movember movement committed to raising funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men. Those awkward moustaches were unavoidable at my office. My company has been an active and proud participant for the past four years; last month more than 80 participants and hundreds of contributors helped raise $38,000 as part of Acquia’s "Mo Drupal" team this year.
The success of Movember is no fluke. From its founding a decade ago in Melbourne, the Movember moustache has expanded to more than two dozen countries. In fact, it’s the simple act of growing a moustache that has encouraged several hundred thousand men around the world to become walking billboards for the — quite literal — face of men’s health, an extremely successful strategy that has helped the annual fundraiser gain momentum. These “Mo Bros” (and their ever-supportive and patient Mo Sistas) raise awareness by prompting private and public conversations about men’s health. They also raise an amazing amount of funds for programs that support men’s health initiatives; Movember donations this year surpassed $106 million worldwide.
According to Mark Hedstrom, the U.S. director for the effort, “Movember is about getting men to engage in a fun and somewhat irreverent campaign. By supporting a fun environment, men start engaging more in their personal health.”
So how has the Movember Foundation had so much success engaging such a vast group of men? Let’s take a look at the top three things: language, competition and keeping it fun.