4 ways to change the world (Note: one involves facial hair)

As you can probably tell from the abundance of pink products available in stores right now, October is Breast Cancer


As you can probably tell from the abundance of pink products available in stores right now, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. While there are myriad ways to think pink and support that cause all month long (and it’s a a worthy cause at that), there are also lots of other great initiatives that deserve your attention this fall. Here are a few that have caught my eye:

‘ Do you ever secretly wish that your man would…grow a handlebar mustache? No? Am I alone here? Well, how about if it were for a good cause? Prostate Cancer Canada has given your dude a great excuse to experiment with his facial hair during their Movember fundraising campaign. Throughout the month of November, guys can raise money and awareness for prostate cancer by growing out their ‘mos (mustaches, if you please). Get you man to register now and get the added bonus of being able to imagine you’re kissing Magnum P.I. Everybody wins!

‘ Now this is is really inspiring: Toronto-based group girl impact aims to empower young women to make social change at home and around the world. Their first project was to round up a group of Toronto-area teen girls who would then raise $50,000 to send 10 Kenyan girls to high school through the UNICEF Kenya Girls Scholarship Programme.Well, they met that first goal and Toronto girls are in Kenya right now, meeting the young women they’re helping. They’re also climbing Mount Kilimanjaro as an extra challenge. Follow their blog chronicling their adventure in Africa (the phtos are amazing) and check out ways to help them reach their next fundraising goal.

‘ Here’s one for the little Picassos: The Eczema Awareness Support and Education (EASE) Program has teamed up with Canadian cartoonist Lynn Johnston (she draws For Better or For Worse) to offer kids a chance to express how they feel about this distressing skin condition. Kids ages 5 to 12 are invited to submit a personal drawing or painting to the "My Life with Eczema" contest that depicts their own struggle with the condition. The winning artist will win a $150 Canada Savings Bond to be put toward their future education, and their artwork will be displayed in dermatology offices across Canada during February’s Eczema Awareness Month. Download a template and contest rules at www.eczemacanada.ca.

‘ What do Nobel Laureate Eli Wiesel and the cast of Degrassi have in common? They’ll all be at Free the Children’s Toronto We Day event on October 5. Free the Children, a Canadian organization that empowers young people to raise funds for kids in need, is launching its annual We Day campaign with two major events this week. The first was in Vancouver and invited B.C. school children to hear an inspirational speech from the Dali Lama (and yes, the Degrassi kids were there, too). The idea is to get youth excited about leading fundraising campaigns that will help do things like build schools and provide clean water for kids in the developing world. You can watch the Toronto We Day event live online and find out more about the organization here.