A man sits in a barber chair in an antique shop, he's sporting large-framed black glasses, and a perfectly groomed, bushy, white, moustache
"If I reach my goal of $10,000, the moustache stays."Image by: Max Rosenstein
A man sits in a barber chair in an antique shop, he's sporting large-framed black glasses, and a perfectly groomed, bushy, white, moustache
A young man with long brown hair and a big bushy beard holds a strand of the beard in one hand, and scissors in the other
21 November 2023

Albert’s story: A first year Mo Bro’s mission to save his 50-year-old moustache

4 minutes read time

I'm of a generation where we were hippies, and the hair was an expression of rebellion. You grew it everywhere and over time, as the rebellion mellowed or as you needed a job, you would get a haircut, trim the beard, or shave the beard. But the moustache always remained. It just became part of your identity, part of your persona. It changes colour with time, so now – after 53 years -- it's white, but it's still there.

To be very candid, I've been aware of the Movember campaign for years, but I've always been “too busy”. This year, I decided to get off my buns and get involved. And I'm glad I did.

Why I got involved with Movember

I was watching Sunday afternoon football, and I saw a commercial for Movember. Something just clicked. I started thinking about the men in my life that I that I know who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. That was the start. Then, I did a quick online search of Movember. It clinched the deal when I saw the dual mandate not just to promote the physical health of men, but the mental health of men -- that cemented it, because that's very important to me for a lot of different reasons.

I’ve known a lot of people who have lived with depression and I’ve seen the effects that that can have on people’s lives and the people around them. As the Chair of a small BIA in downtown Toronto, we all heard about the economic impact of COVID on the business owners and their families. But there was a significant emotional and psychological impact. People wondering about their future, their businesses, their homes. Our BIA – Broadview Danforth – is only one of 80 in Toronto, probably hundreds in Ontario, and thousands in Canada. What was happening for us, was happening everywhere. It took an emotional toll on everyone.

Save Albert’s Mo

I told the BIA about wanting to get involved in Movember this year, so we thought we could have a program that collected money for the cause. Originally we thought, if we reach the goal, then I’ll shave off my 50-year-old moustache. But I thought that was a little negative, so wanted to turn it on its head. That’s how we came up with “Save Albert’s Stache.” If I reach my goal of $10,000, the moustache stays. If we fall short, it comes off. It’s really resonating with people. We’ve got posters all over Broadview Danforth, so I’ve been getting a lot of people coming up to me and saying that they know Movember and they think it’s an amazing organization. At the end of the day, whatever we get is going to be a success.

The most important conversation I hope to encourage

The most important one is that initial conversation a man will have with himself. When he realizes he has an issue. Then comes the next step of asking for help. My hope is that this broader attention we’re getting will encourage men to take that first step. From my own experience, I find that people hold in a lot. But I’ve learned that if you’re out in the open, people respond to that, because you’re not the only one who might be feeling or thinking that way. People’s guard is let down when we find this common ground.

If the Mo has to go, at least it’s for a good cause

I have a son, whom I love dearly. I find it comforting to know that should he need help in the future, it will be there for him and his friends, thanks to Movember.

I would like to have many more years with him. And I’m just one father with a son. One man with a brother. I think it’s nice to have us around for a little longer, whether it’s to achieve our goals or fulfill our ambitions. There are so many stories out there that we just have to keep going.

There’s a sense of pride if I have even a small role to play in making that possible.

Help Save Albert’s Stache and change the face of men’s health.