Every year, during the month of November, men all across the world put away their razors and grow their best mustaches in support of prostate cancer. The effort, coined “Movember,” has become an international phenomenon, aiming to raise both awareness and funds for the cause.
This year, Tim Gerber ’17, Jack Wood ’17, and Jared Strauss ’17 spearheaded the month-long event within the Deerfield community. When the three boys showed interest in spreading awareness, Dean of Students Kevin Kelly immediately granted them permission to lead the project.
Gerber, Wood, and Strauss also hoped to get the female population more involved. Although they acknowledged that women cannot be diagnosed with prostate cancer or grow mustaches to raise awareness, Wood explained, “We want to be more inclusive to both genders, to unite the school towards a worthy cause.” To achieve this objective, the juniors ensured both genders were addressed during sit-down announcements and via other messages. They also hoped to bring on a female representative to encourage girls to buy the gender-inclusive merchandise that will be for sale.
This year, they decided to make T-shirts as well as bracelets to raise money and awareness for prostate cancer. All proceeds will go to the Prostate Cancer Foundation, “chosen specifically over the American Cancer Society, so that all profits made will go directly to the cause,” explained Gerber.
Gerber, Wood, and Strauss decided to feature Timothy Wondoloski, known fondly as “Wondo,” from Shipping and Receiving on the T-shirt design. Gerber described Wondo as “an obvious choice” after “extensive conversation with him” and seeing pictures of his “legendary mustache.”
The heads also tried to order and sell mustache products, like dyes and gels, to really take the event to the next level and motivate Deerfield’s male population. Wood recalled his “freshman year mustache role model,” alumnus Gil Roddy ’14, who said, “If you’re not using product, you’re not trying.”
Overall, the group considered Movember a success and hope the momentum will carry into the rest of the year. They believe that Movember should not be limited to simply a month of dedicated efforts, but a year-long awareness and consciousness of prostate cancer and related diseases. By building on similar events, like “Saving by Shaving,” in which community members shaved their head to support the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Gerber, Wood, and Strauss plan to continue raising awareness about cancer through their Movember initiatives.