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Believers encouraged to be hairy for Movember men's health drive

Men’s health campaign Movember is looking forward to seeing faith groups join them in their follicle fun ...

The annual men’s health campaign, Movember, that asks men to grow moustaches for a month is looking forward to seeing faith groups join them in their follicle fun.

For 30 days from the beginning of this month, hairy upper lips will be raising awareness and money for men’s health causes and with the introduction of the ‘Holy Mo Challenge’, churches across the UK have a new way to get involved.

Movember’s Network Challenges bring together groups and communities from within the same industry in a fun, competitive environment. The launch of the ‘Holy Mo Challenge’ is set to let faith communities show off their renowned capacity for facial growth, gathering together leaders, local churches and communities to help achieve their vision of having an everlasting impact on the face of men’s health.

“We are a grass roots movement led by its communities, this support is vital to the success of the campaign” explains Movember. “We're very excited to have the support of faith communities in the UK this year and are fully behind the Holy Mo Challenge. As usual at this time of year we look forward to the sprouting of moustaches across the UK, all in the name of men's health.”

The Rt Rev James Newcome, Bishop of Carlisle and lead Bishop on healthcare for the Church of England adds, “I would like to commend Movember for encouraging faith communities to engage with issues of men's health and encourage people to consider growing a moustache this Movember, proudly sporting Holy Mos in our communities and supporting those who do.

"Many lives, including those of my friends and colleagues have been impacted by testicular and prostate cancer and by the stigma attached to talking about them. The Holy Mo Challenge provides even greater opportunity for local churches and faith communities to raise awareness and help change the face of men's health.”

Churches from Glengormley in Northern Ireland and Clyde Valley in Scotland, to Stockton, Doncaster and Shoeburyness in England have already entered the Challenge.

Reverend David Southall (left) from the chaplaincy team at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has entered his team, the ‘Mighty Movember Chaplains’, and says, “it is a great opportunity to raise money for and promote men’s health issues. It is such a serious subject and men are not great at approaching the medical profession. Anything we can do to raise awareness and have conversations about it is great.”

The campaign has raised more than £275 million since it started in 2004, with more than a million people taking part in 2012.

Men and women, known as ‘Mo Sistas’, can join Movember at https://www.movember.com/uk/register, enter teams in the Challenge at http://monetwork.co/holymo, order a promo pack from http://uk.movember.com/merchandise/view/id/773 and view a free, embeddable slideshow to accompany the launch of the Challenge.

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