MoBro heads back to school

02:46, Dec 03 2012
angus westgarth
Angus Westgarth prepares his hair - facial and otherwise - for a shot at the Christchurch "Man of Movember" title as Heath Ledger’s Joker from the Batman films.

Well, it's over. The crazy month that is Movember has ended for another year, but the last week wasn't without some really special memories.

As our quest to raise money and awareness for men's cancers and mental health comes to a screaming halt, we are left to clean up our faces.

But does it really stop here? No way! The work we have done is a foundation for what we will do next year, and the awareness will live on. As any MoBro or MoSista will tell you, the month is over and the mo might go but our work is never done.

bluestone school movember
NEW MOS: Pupils at Bluestone Primary School show off their best homemade mos at their Movember mufti day last week.

The last week saw me lucky enough to attend Bluestone Primary School's Movember mufti day. I took part in judging the kids' moustaches, as parents had helped their children create their own MO'sterpieces. It was such an honour to go back to my old primary school and be part of something that is so special to me.

The competition was tough, with moustaches ranging from possum fur to artistic wonders crafted from straws! Our mos are going to have some big competition in the coming years with a new generation of MoBros and MoSistas.

Then it was my time to start preparing for my shot at the "Man of Movember" title at Christchurch's gala party.


It was on Friday morning at about 2am I had decided on my costume - Heath Ledger's Joker character from the Batman films. After seeing the results come in from the Auckland and Wellington parties and getting lots of compliments on my mo, I was feeling pretty confident at my chances of securing my first title.

We left TiMOru Friday afternoon with a small but vocal Timaru crew. Once in Christchurch, we stopped in a random carpark to put on my makeup and get dressed. At the party, my Joker got the nomination for "Man of Movember" along with five other mos.

Sadly, the Joker died on the brown carpet, with the conservative Christchurch judging choosing a classic slug-like mo to take the title.

So as the month closes out and normality returns, I may be without a "Man of Movember" title, but what I have learnt, taught and created is more valuable than any title!

I was the first person to take Movember across the country and reached thousands of people, arming them with knowledge and spreading the Movember message.

I want to leave you with a few thoughts: In New Zealand, one in two men will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. We lose more men to suicide than we do on our roads. I was nearly a statistic due to my battles with depression and I'll do anything to show you that life is amazing. No matter how dark the day seems, hold onto that little light because your life is worth it.

Donations close on December 10, so get them in to Movember is really my Christmas, and it's been a pleasure to share it with you all.

The Timaru Herald