No razors for 30 days. That’s the mantra for participants of Grow Your Mo, a community campaign to raise money for Oregon Cancer Foundation.

Thirteen men from Lane County are growing their facial hair for the month of November to spread awareness about OCF’s Financial Assistance Program. The program provides stopgap emergency funding to patients undergoing cancer treatment in Lane County.

Participants include Willamette Valley Cancer Institute oncologists Jeff Sharman, Charles Anderson, John Fitzharris and Matthew Lonergan, along with elected officials Pat Farr and Sean VanGordon. TV and radio personalities Rick Dancer, Barry MacGuire and Anthony Kustura are also in the lineup of men soliciting votes at growyourmo.org.

“The whole idea for me is that when people ask, ‘Why are you growing that hair?’, I can talk openly about prostate cancer and encourage men to take an active role in their health,” says Rick Dancer, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2010. “This fundraiser is also something that will have a direct impact on people dealing with cancer right now.”

Michael Heer, Vice President of H&J Construction, was initially encouraged by Dr. Sharman to join the Grow Your Mo campaign, and he didn’t hesitate. Michael lives with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and he knows the emotional toll and stress cancer causes. Along with his three children—dubbed his “Mo Mafia”—Michael shared his story with KMTR NewsSource 16 in hopes of generating support for the cause.

“The money donated stays right here in Lane County and helps people during a really tough time,” Michael says. “To be involved with this and raise money that will help people when they need it most, I’m completely onboard with that.”

For the physicians at WVCI, supporting Oregon Cancer Foundation is also close to their hearts. Their patients have received support from OCF.

“As the stubble begins to turn into a beard, many of my patients ask about it,” says gynecologic oncologist Charles Anderson. “This offers a segue into discussing Grow Your Mo and Oregon Cancer Foundation. Patients love to hear about what we’re doing. They think OCF is a wonderful organization and that this is a neat campaign.”

Who benefits
The Oregon Cancer Foundation offers patients monetary assistance, so they don’t have to choose between basic needs and optimal cancer treatment. Help comes in many different forms, such as funds for a utility bill or a hotel room, so that patients traveling to Eugene or Springfield to receive treatment have a place to stay. All the money raised stays in the local area, meaning your donations may be helping someone you know.

How does Grow Your Mo work?
It’s simple. Visit growyourmo.org and learn more about the men participating. Check out weekly updates on their progress as they continue to grow their facial hair through November. And most importantly, vote. $1 = 1 vote, and you can vote as many times as you’d like for your favorite “mo” (moustache, beard, goatee) or “Mo Bro.” Again, all proceeds benefit Oregon Cancer Foundation and support cancer patients in Lane County.

Clean shaven doctors Jeff Sharman and Charles Anderson at the start of Grow Your Mo

Clean shaven doctors Jeff Sharman and Charles Anderson at the start of Grow Your Mo

As a prostate cancer survivor, Rick Dancer participates in Grow Your Mo to spread awareness

As a prostate cancer survivor, Rick Dancer participates in Grow Your Mo to spread awareness

Michael Heer and his "Mo Mafia" encourage everyone to vote

Michael Heer and his “Mo Mafia” encourage everyone to vote

Drs. John Fitzharris and Matthew Lonergan after week 2

Drs. John Fitzharris and Matthew Lonergan after week 2