Movember raises awareness for men’s health


During last October at Ames High, the annual Pink week festivities made the school aglow in pink for promoting breast cancer awareness; yet there is not an event such as large as this for the awareness of men’s health issues.

One can see pink trash cans in abundance around Ames, buy apparel at local stores, and go to “walks” to sponsor breast cancer awareness down in Des Moines. Why not designate a deep shade of blue for mens’ health week and hold events that encourage knowledge men’s issues such as prostate cancer? This is what Movember is for: men around the country go sans shaving for the entire 30 days of November in order to make known the dangers of prostate cancer and other diseases, and also to promote the general well-being of men.

“[Movember] is a good way to get guys talking about something they don’t normally like talking about,” James Webb, english teacher and participant of Movember this year said. “A lot of it is that men ignore their health- it’s kind of a manly thing.”

Webb has been growing out his facial hair for the first time this November. His wife vetoed the full beard though, and he has been trying to keep in neat. “It [also] is a facial statement….another opportunity to express yourself,” said Webb.

It is also senior Jens Hoifeldt’s first time growing it out. Though not a member of Lumberjack Club, the club at AHS which initiated the Movember cause in the school, he still is involved with the cause. “Shaving is kind of a giant pain,” said Hoifeldt.

Even if you are not a member of the club (or male, for that matter) getting involved and becoming interested in the cause is the first place to start.

Concerning technicalities with facial hair and odd comments that generated from his newly grown beard, Hoifeldt added, “I suppose ‘can I touch it?’ is kind of a strange request [I have received], although I really don’t mind.”

Webb emphasized that junior Caroline Marnin, co-president of Lumberjack Club, really made this happen. Men’s health is not only a concern for men, just as one can see plenty of men going around in pink shirt with ribbons on them during Pink Week.

“I look at a lot of people my age, and they’re out of shape, and if something’s wrong, they don’t get it checked out,” said Webb, “[Movember is to] let people know it’s okay to get help.”