Western Isles Movember raises £3,500 for men’s cancer group

The Hebridean Men’s Cancer Support Group were  last week presented with a cheque for £3,500 as a result of “Movember” events that took place last year.

Movember Western Isles 2013 was kick-started when men were encouraged to take up the challenge of growing themselves a moustache (a “mo”) during the 30 days of November. These stylish “Mo Bros” were then able to raise awareness of the often-ignored issue of men’s health, and prompt conversations about men’s cancers and the importance of detecting cancer early. Many of the men also encouraged friends and colleagues to sponsor them whilst they undertook their “mo” challenge.

The first Movember event held in the Western Isles was the annual ‘Battle of the Sexes’ quiz evening, which attracted 35 teams from throughout Lewis and raised over £350. The coveted trophy was once again awarded to Talk Talk’s Sahara Kayaking Club.

The main Movember event was the highly-successful men’s 5k. Almost 200 men, and boys aged over 12, registered for the event. As well as monies received from the 5k entrants, sponsorship forms were provided to each entrant to encourage additional fundraising. The event has been deemed such a success that the men’s 5k will now become an annual event, after raising over £3,000.

Golfers who took part in the Stornoway Golf Club Winter League were unable to take part in the 5k and organised a collection amongst themselves, providing a generous donation of £150.
An “Old Firm Friendly” 11-a-side football match was held in Tarbert and featured players on both teams from the neighbouring islands of Lewis and Harris. A collection was taken on the day from players and spectators.

Finally, during the month of Movember, a number of local busi­nesses and workplaces encour­aged their staff and customers to help with additional fundraising. Donation boxes were made available at a number of locations, including the Lewis Sports Centre, Lewis and Harris Rangers Club, and Stornoway Golf Club. A number of private donations were also made directly to the Hebridean Men’s Cancer Support Group.

A spokesman for the group said: “We are overwhelmed by this magnificent and generous donation from Movember Western Isles. In addition to assisting HMCSG to help and support men affected by cancer, their relatives and friends, this also highlights the tremendous work being done so effectively by the NHS Western Isles health promotion department and sport and health at Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. We are delighted to work in partnership with them in promoting the early detection of cancer and the progress made in treating cancer and creating a public awareness of every aspect of the cancer journey.”