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Sporting moustaches for a good cause

4 mins read

EXAMS are on the horizon and the BUCS season is in full swing, but sports teams across campus have spent the entire month raising vital funds and awareness for Movember.

The Movember foundation is the world’s leading men’s health charity which focusses on supporting people who suffer with testicular cancer, prostate cancer and mental health issues.

Suicide is still the leading killer of men under the age of 45 and three quarters of all suicides are completed by men.

By 2030, the Movember Foundation aims to reduce the amount of male suicides by 25 per cent through different projects and campaigns.

In the “Big Moustache on Campus’ challenge, the University of Stirling is currently sitting in the top ten out of all British colleges and univerities.

On November 15, the halfway point, the university broke the £11,000 barrier, with the men’s rugby team contributing to over a quarter of that total.

Men’s Rugby first XV captain Jack Sutherland said: “We’ve decided to do Movember again this year because it’s an important cause for all men, young and old.

“Many men suffer from mental health issues and cancer, so to raise money to help fight these issues is the least we can do.

“At the end of the day we’re looking to prolong or even save a person’s life and that itself is worth every penny.”

His teammate, Robbie Tinton, added: “I signed up because it’s something so small that collectively makes such a huge difference.

“I know so many people doing something and actively raising money for Movember.

“Whether it’s for cancer or men’s mental health, it’s great to be seeing so many guys around uni like myself, looking the part for the month.”

Last year’s success from men’s rugby appears to have inspired other sports teams to up their game for the cause.

Cricket president Calum Bickerton told us: “I got involved because I wanted to contribute to this great cause.

“The team entered again this year so that we can try and raise as much money as possible and beat last year’s total, which we have already.”

It’s not just male sports teams that are doing their bit for the cause, as the women’s Gaelic Football team smashed the £1,000 mark last week.

The team is moving for Movember, with each member aiming to run 60 miles over the month, representing the 60 male lives lost each hour to suicide.

And women from the rowing team are supporting their male teammates, taking part in some silly challenges because they can’t grow moustaches.

After smashing several fundraising targets, some of the team’s members have even got their club’s initials tattooed on them.

Although testicular cancer and prostate cancer are more commonly assoiated with older generations, it is vital that students understand the importance of checking yourself and not being afraid to visit the doctor if something doesn’t feel right.

Testicular cancer is the most common form of cancer among men aged 15-39, and one in 20 men who are diagnosed do not survive it.

Despite being a relatively small university in terms of numbers, the Sports Union’s teams are making large steps in tackling stigmas around mental health.

The commitment of teams big and small throughout the Movember campaign have shown that being part of the Bleed Green family is about so much more than playing matches on a Wednesday.

Featured image credit: SURFC

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