Dick­son does Movem­ber

Rais­ing funds for prostate, tes­tic­u­lar can­cer re­search, men­tal health, sui­cide pre­ven­tion

Tillsonburg News - - FRONT PAGE - CHRIS AB­BOTT

Prostate can­cer, tes­tic­u­lar can­cer, men­tal health and sui­cide pre­ven­tion.

Ev­ery year ‘Mo Bros’ and ‘Mo Sis­tas’, as they are called by The Movem­ber Foun­da­tion, raise funds and bring aware­ness to these men’s health is­sues, and more, en­cour­ag­ing early de­tec­tion, di­ag­no­sis and treat­ment, re­duc­ing the risk of pre­ventable deaths.

For Dr. Mark Dick­son in Till­son­burg it’s Year 4 as an ac­tive Movem­ber par­tic­i­pant. It’s the only month of the year when he grows a mous­tache.

“Anna, my wife, doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily like the look of the mous­tache,” Dick­son laughed, “but with re­gards to Movem­ber and rais­ing money for men’s health, prostate can­cer, tes­tic­u­lar can­cer re­search, sui­cide pre­ven­tion... it’s for a great cause to grow a mous­tache to raise aware­ness for these ini­tia­tives. So she is okay with me sport­ing the mous­tache this time of the year .... for one month.”

Dick­son tra­di­tion­ally be­gins the month of Novem­ber with a shave, done at home, to kick off Movem­ber, which orig­i­nated in Aus­tralia in Novem­ber 1999.

“Some of my friends and I, we all do a clean shave and then take a pic­ture. When Movem­ber is done, I have the kids (Josie and Thomas) help with the shav­ing. I have bar­ber clip­pers that they use to shave the longer hairs off, then I’ll do the fine shav­ing af­ter that. I find that if I don’t in­clude them, they will get scared be­cause I look dif­fer­ent.”

Dick­son, who has raised $4,288 since 2015, said he had al­ways wanted to take part in the event, but Novem­ber was not an ideal month.

“A lot of my friends would start do­ing it so I wanted to join them and join the cause of Movem­ber. So I had sup­port from friends that en­cour­aged me to go ahead and grow a mous­tache and raise money for Movem­ber. They were the ones that got me go­ing.”

Dick­son, owner of Dick­son Chi­ro­prac­tic, is gen­er­ously sup­ported by his pa­tients in Movem­ber - the of­fice decor in­cludes mous­tache mem­o­ra­bilia. He has a Kleenex box with mous­tache on it, he has a mous­tache bal­loon, and a Movem­ber news­pa­per clip­ping from 2017.

“They see it and tend to chip in later in the month once the mous­tache starts grow­ing more. In the be­gin­ning, the first week is usu­ally slower (col­lect­ing do­na­tions) be­cause it usu­ally takes a week or two for the mous­tache to come in. As the mous­tache grows, the do­na­tions grow.”

So­cial me­dia is also a big part of his Movem­ber cam­paign. He has a ‘Dr. Mark Dick­son’ page on the Movem­ber Canada web­site (https://ca.movem­ber.com/ mo­space/12653117), which as of Mon­day showed he had raised $86 of his $1,500 goal.

“I have known sev­eral sur­vivors of Prostate Can­cer,” says Dick­son on his page, “and am ded­i­cat­ing my work to sup­port­ing these amaz­ing men. We can all do our best when work­ing to­gether and sup­port­ing one an­other through var­i­ous chal­lenges in life.”

He posts a photo on a daily ba­sis through­out Movem­ber, show­ing his sup­port­ers how the mous­tache growth is pro­gress­ing, and pro­vides a re­search statis­tic about prostate can­cer, tes­tic­u­lar can­cer, men­tal health and sui­cide pre­ven­tion.

“I link it to Face­book to keep some of my fol­low­ers up­dated with how the fundrais­ing is go­ing and how the mous­tache is look­ing.”

Last year he set a tar­get of $1,000, and in ‘Movem­ber 2017’ dou­bled that with last-minute do­na­tions putting him over the $2,000 mile­stone. This year his goal is $1,500.

“It is a lot of money and I don’t want to get too overly stressed about ‘one week away and I need an­other $1,000 to come in.’ So I de­cided to keep it at $1,500 and see how the month pro­gresses.”

A new el­e­ment was added to Movem­ber 2018, known as ‘My Move’. In many cases, that will in­volve run­ning or walk­ing, and his web page has a ‘My Move’ kilo­me­tre counter.

“The idea is to lead by ex­am­ple, that by me be­ing ac­tive it might help oth­ers be ac­tive. So on the web­site, I’m up­dat­ing it. I’m try­ing a 30-day plank chal­lenge... the chal­lenge is to do a five-minute plank at the end of 30 days.

“Ta­mara Bull started this 30-day plank chal­lenge back in Jan­uary and she is kind of a leader in the com­mu­nity do­ing these planks. Her record is 51 min­utes right now, hold­ing a plank - and her mother does it, and her daugh­ter, so it’s three gen­er­a­tions that can do over a five-minute plank. Hear­ing this, it’s in­spired me to also try a five-minute plank. I think it’s go­ing to be very dif­fi­cult. My wife Anna is also train­ing too, so we will both do a five-minute plank on the last day of Movem­ber.”

Do­na­tions to Dick­son’s Movem­ber fundrais­ing cam­paign can be made through the web­site, which ac­cepts debit, credit cards and Pay­pal.

“If it’s over $10 you can get a re­ceipt for in­come tax, so that’s nice. Pa­tients and friends typ­i­cally give me money and I will process the in­for­ma­tion on­line for them, then they will get a re­ciept to their email ad­dress.”

As of Sun­day night, the mous­tache was still in its early stages.

“It’s start­ing,” he laughed. “Yeah, there’s more to­day.”

Dick­son was con­tacted by a lo­cal Uni­for rep this year who will be rais­ing funds for Movem­ber through their union and, af­ter learn­ing of Dick­son’s cam­paign through so­cial me­dia, will be pre­sent­ing Dick­son with a cheque at the end of the month.

“That’s great.”

Also, the Till­son­burg Hur­ri­canes ju­nior hockey team, who gave Dick­son a Movem­ber do­na­tion last year, have stepped it up to grow their own Movem­ber mous­taches.

“They will be help­ing my cam­paign as well. At the end, maybe we’ll get some pic­tures with the team.”

Con­trib­uted photo

Dr. Mark Dick­son in Till­son­burg, with his chil­dren Thomas and Josie, posted this pic­ture on Novem­ber 1st to be­gin the month of Movem­ber. Dick­son will be rais­ing funds and aware­ness for prostate can­cer re­search, tes­tic­u­lar can­cer, men­tal health and sui­cide pre­ven­tion by grow­ing a mous­tache in Novem­ber, and healthy liv­ing.

CHRIS AB­BOTT/TILL­SON­BURG NEWS

Till­son­burg Legion Branch 153 will be co-host­ing a Re­mem­brance Day ser­vice on Sun­day, Novem­ber 11 start­ing at 10:45 a.m., fol­low­ing a 10:30 a.m. Silent Walk. In the evening, Bells of Peace will be ring­ing 100 times in town at dusk.

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