Twenty-two members of the Sylvan Lake Fire Department grew mustaches and beards for Movember. The campaign surpassed the goal of $1,000, in the end the department raised more than $7,000 for prostate, testicular cancers as well as mental health awareness. Photo submitted

Sylvan Lake Fire Department surpasses Movember goal

Twenty-two members of the Sylvan Lake Fire Department participated in Movember this year

After 30 days of growing beards, moustaches and other facial hair styles, the Sylvan Lake Fire Department was able to to surpass its Movember goal.

Initially the goal was to raise $1,000 for the Movember Foundation, which works to stop men from dying prematurely by working to promote health issue facing men and funding research in prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health.

The initial goal was blown out of the water with a final tally of $7,340 raised by 22 members of the department.

Lieutenant Ben James, one of the organizers, said the campaign started through talking and making fun of firefighter’s moustaches.

“It wasn’t anything seriously really. It sort of spit-balled out of a funny discussion,” said James, who added the department hadn’t done a Movember campaign before though it was known to him.

The original goal was set because James wasn’t sure how many members of the fire department would want to be apart of the campaign.

The initial thought was if 10 of the members joined and brought in $100, it would cover the goal.

In the end 22 members joined and all but two members were able to raise something for the cause.

James says the month became a bit of a competition between those participating to see who could raise the most money.

Ryan Spady raised the most money out of all the members, with a total of $1,180 raised over the month of November.

“[Spady] just blew us out of the water, or well he blew me out of the water,” James said.

Within the first 24 hours of signing up for a campaign, the fire department had already surpassed the set goal.

“It was at that point where all just went ‘Well I guess we are going to do more,’” he said.

The crew had a lot of fun with the campaign and growing out their facial hair for the month, according to James.

Each member had a style in mind to grow over the month. Some went for silly moustaches, others, like James, chose something else like a beard or goatee.

There were some, according to James, who had a bit of difficulty growing a moustache over the month.

“There were quite a few disappointed wives,” James joked.

The money raised throughout the campaign will be donated to the Movember Foundation which will be used to further research for afflictions greatly affecting men, like prostate and testicular cancers, as well as mental health awareness.

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