THOSE with a phobia of facial hair had better go into hiding this month as moustaches of all shapes and sizes appear on the faces of men around the world.
And staff at the Great Western Hospital are not missing out on the chance grow the hair on their upper lip for a good cause this “Movember.”
The unusual fundraiser aims to raise vital funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate and testicular cancer.
Trainee doctor Paul Collins, 31, is one of a team at the GWH who will be sporting a Tom Selleck-style ‘tache by the end of the month.
He said: “It started off as a bit of a fun really, but when I looked into it a bit more I thought I could make more of it, get more of the hospital involved and help raise the profile of men’s health.
“Prostate cancer is most prevalent in men and is the second killer after lung cancer, but if you compare it to breast cancer, which has such a high profile, prostate cancer just doesn’t get as much coverage.
“I think it is partly because there is no real cure, the treatments we have are very effective at prolonging its duration but men are also less willing to talk about their health.
“Most of the time, when an older man turns up at the GP then there is something really wrong, or they’ve been pushed by their wives.
“I have put posters up around the hospital to let people know what we are doing, with information on what men should be looking out for each decade of their lives.
“So young men should look out for testicular cancer, while older men should check for prostate cancer.
And it is encouraging people to approach their GPs for check- ups, even if it is just once in every 10 years, rather than just sitting on it until it becomes a serious problem.”
For the month of Movember, the rules state that each ‘Mo Bro’ must grow and groom a moustache, with no joining of the mo to the sideburns because that is considered a beard, no joining of the handlebars to the chin as that is considered a goatee, and each Mo Bro must conduct himself like a true gentleman.
Paul said: “I was cleanly shaven on November 1 as the rules state so we will see how it goes. I will definitely have something to show in a couple of weeks.
“If I was a student I think iI would probably grow big mutton chops but in the hospital environment I will keep it tidy.
“I might try and wax it in to shape and wear a top hat and tails.
“But I think I am going to look a bit like Tom Selleck.”
At the end of the month, Paul is hoping to hold a party with his fellow colleagues to compare moustaches and raise more money. To sponsor the team visit www.uk.movember.com and search for The Great Western Hospital team.