Chicago and Portland Employees Grow Their Mustaches to Support Men’s Health

More than 30 Volkswagen Parts Service Center (PSC) and Customer Service Center (CSC) employees in Chicago and Portland recently let their mustaches grow in recognition of “Movember,” an annual November tradition in which thousands of men in the U.S. and around the world raise funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer.

With the support of the women in their lives, “Mo Sistas,” Movember “Mo Bros” raise funds by seeking out sponsorships for their mustache-growing efforts. The team “Stache for Cash” organized a Movember event at the PSC and the CSC, offering employees a day to wear jeans, called “Casual Tuesday,” if they contributed to the Movember charity collection. As a result of this effort, the centers raised $623.

The Stache for Cash teams raised a grand total of $3,183 for the Movember fundraiser.

Kevin Walker, Stache For Cash’s team captain, expounded on why he and his colleagues decided to grow their mustaches for a cause:

Q.   Kevin, can you tell me a little about your experience throughout the month of Movember?

A.    A small group of seven guys in our work area decided to band together, sacrifice our upper lips and participate in the Movember cause. Once word of our participation spread, there was a lot of interest from others in joining the team. We ended up with 39 team members from both the Portland and Chicago Service Centers, including men and women, to help raise money and awareness for men’s health.

The Movember organization supports prostate cancer and other male cancer. Specifically, donations are distributed to the Prostate Cancer Foundation and LIVESTRONG. We have found that this is a cause that doesn’t often get the type of attention other serious health concerns receive, and this would be a fun way to show our support. We set a fairly lofty goal of trying to collect at least $3,000 in donations as a team while growing mustaches to show our commitment. At first, seeing so many of us strolling the hallways with underdeveloped mustaches was a bit strange and even creepy. But as nature took its course, the bond amongst the “Mo Bros” grew, which led to a lot of good-natured joking, but also an appreciation that so many of us would be willing to look a little unusual in efforts to raise awareness.

I think some of the Mo Bros were surprised to see the results come the end of the month both on their face and in the team donations! I am really excited to report that as of the end of Movember our team has secured $3,183 in total donations. We had a lot of fun along the way, which makes the results even more gratifying.

Q.   Is there a story behind why you decided to get involved with Movember?

A.    I’ve found that men’s health issues, such as prostate cancer, don’t get the same sort of attention as other health problems. I think there’s a tendency among many men not to discuss these sorts of topics or quite simply not be informed enough about them to join a discussion. Unfortunately, there seems to be a sort of stigma attached to the topic of prostate cancer. An event such as Movember gives men and women a reason to talk about this important topic all while having a little fun. I think the light side of Movember makes it “ok” for everyone. Through activities such as Movember I feel the stigma is being broken and more men are willing to join the discussion, not to mention put focus on their own health.

I would encourage work teams across our organization to get involved each year and sacrifice your faces for men’s health. It’s worthwhile and is one of the best teambuilding experiences I’ve been a part of.  I’d be honored to have new Mo Bros join us next Movember!

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