BELLEVILLE –This month men everywhere are growing out their facial hair in support of Movember, a campaign which raises money and awareness to fight prostate cancer.
At the beginning of the month, men shaved away their facial hair and over the next 30 days they will grow in moustaches.
Rob Washburn , a professor of journalism at Loyalist College, organized a program-wide group shave where students came together for the cause as a team and shaved away their facial hair to kick off Movember.
“I like it because it’s sort of a coming together,” Washburn said. “I hope that there will be lots of young men joining me.”
Movember is more than just growing moustaches. For a lot of participants the campaign holds deeper meaning than just facial hair. Washburn said he joined the Movember team because the cause is close to his heart.
He is also hoping that women will participate by joining a team or setting up a donation page online, he said: “I know they all have fathers and brothers and boyfriends, and it would be nice for them to join us and help us raise money.”
The idea is that men grow out their facial hair in stylish and crazy ways to raise money for the cause. But what happens when you can’t actually grow a moustache?
Just because women can’t grow a moustache doesn’t mean they can’t participate in Movember. First-year journalism student Mariia Khanenko is taking part in the campaign by leaving her eyebrows ungroomed for the month.
“My family member passed (away) a couple years ago from cancer and she was only 18 years old. So I think it’s really important to increase awareness because a lot of good people are passing away. So it’s really important to be involved,” Khanenko said.
People can also participate in Movember by spreading the word and raising money to support the one in eight men diagnosed with prostate cancer.
According to the financial page  on the official Movember website, $17.5 million was raised in Canada in 2015 for the Movember movement. Since the campaign began 13 years ago, $759 million has been raised.
The journalism program has set up a group Movember website  where people can go to donate. It is also challenging other programs at Loyalist to set up their own teams for a little friendly competition for who can raise the most money for the cause.
Here’s a look at Movember’s history through the years, with files from Emilie Quesnel .