Before the Movember Foundation was created in 2003, moustaches and prostate cancer had nothing in common.

When the Foundation started in 2003 in Melbourne, Australia it was only 30 other men growing moustaches. Andrée Paulin, Senior Manager of Development and Head of Community at Movember Foundation, says that there are over 1 million “Mo Bros” and “Mo Sistas” in Canada alone that will participate this year. Paulin adds that $230 million has been raised in Canada. She adds that, along with Canada, the Foundation does work in 20 other counties with another 5 million participants.

“Our goal is to stop men from dying too young,” Paulin says. November is the Foundation’s main month – dubbed “Movember,” as men across the world grow moustaches to raise money for prostate cancer research. Dr. Piotr O’Glaza, the Medical Officer of Health at Hastings Prince Edward Public Health, says that prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer that men suffer from. The most common form is called Adenocarcinoma. “The peak is around 70, 74 or so,” O’Glaza says. After that, the risk goes down, but not by much, he says. O’Glaza adds that while common, a lot of men die with prostate cancer, not from.

Paulin says that while November is their busiest month, they do a lot of work during the other 11 months. The Foundation works to raise funds for testicular cancer search along with working on men’s mental health and suicide prevention.

“It started as something fun, a joke among friends,” Paulin says. In the years since they have done all they can to change the face of men’s health.

You can do your part in changing the face of men’s health by signing up at Movember’s website.