Man with pink moustache rides his bike on a footpath with trees in the background
Ben will cycle from Cairns to Brisbane, and back again.Image by: Ben Anderson
Man with pink moustache rides his bike on a footpath with trees in the background
Man sits in blood donation clinic with nurse wrapping his arm in blue bandage
8 November 2023

Pink Mo Bro Ben Anderson rides for Movember x Lifeblood

4 minutes read time

Ben Anderson, and his iconic pink moustache and mohawk, has been pushing the limits of his body and mind for Movember for the past 14 years. This year is his biggest challenge yet, he will cycle from Cairns to Brisbane, and back again. That’s nearly 4,000 kms for those playing at home. His journey will spark conversations about men's health and amplify the work of Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, encouraging more men to donate blood.

Ben shares why being a Mo Bro is so important to his own personal journey.

Initially, I didn't have a purpose when I started with Movember. It was just to grow a Mo and that's about it. But as time passed, I started to learn more about the impact Movember has, as well as the impact I was able to have on other men's lives. So, I began to really get stuck in and become part of the movement.

Throughout the years, I have also become increasingly connected to Lifeblood as a blood donor. One day, I just had a light bulb moment. Movember and Lifeblood share the same values. I share the same values. Helping someone who needs it, whether that is by making a blood donation or speaking out at a men's group about mental health. I made it my mission to start donating and getting other Mo Bros and Mo Sisters to donate as well.

This year the connection is even stronger when we roll up our sleeves at the donation centre. You will get your arm wrapped in a limited-edition Movember x Lifeblood bandage, designed by Movember Co-Founder, Travis Garone.

My challenge this Movember is my most ambitious project yet, riding my bike from Cairns to Brisbane and back in 30 days. While this is no doubt a massive physical challenge, it is also a mental one as well. You can push your body to any limit but if your mind isn't ready, then it's going to be a struggle. There will be some dark days but there will also be some amazing ones as well.

I am hoping to bring some awareness to the smaller communities along my journey about men's health and the impact it has on others. Men are terrible about getting themselves checked out, whether that's physically or emotionally. It's not always about mental health. How many times have there been people who have gone to the doctor only to be told that they may have prostate cancer, or in the case of a young man with testicular cancer?

" I am turning 50 next year and I am actually looking forward to receiving my bowel cancer test kit in the mail. "

For the month of Movember, I always colour my Mo pink. It has been through a couple of colours; white and also blood red (a shout out to Lifeblood). But the pink suits me and it's been pink all year and it will continue to be pink for many years to come. It's a conversation starter, it gets people talking about men's health and health in general.

I used to actively race in triathlons around the world, which through certain periods of my life, has taken its toll on my own mental health. I have been with my psychologist for the past 5 years and feel very fortunate to have her support, along with the support of my loving wife and kids. I am proud that I could reach out during those times and ask for support.

Over the last couple of years, especially when I had my own personal issues to deal with, I have been a lot more open to how I am feeling and using my own knowledge and experiences to help others, all year around, not just during the month of the Mo. I have taught my own sons to feel OK about reaching out to someone about how they are feeling. If they don't feel like they can talk to me, then that's fine. I just want them to feel OK to be vulnerable and share their emotions.

Movember has given me the experience and knowledge to be able to help others. There are no egos when it comes to being a Mo Bro. It's just about helping and supporting the people around you. Now I encourage everyone to stand out from the crowd, be brave and explore the opportunities to use your Mo as a conversation starter for men's health, trust me, it works.

Roll up your sleeves and give blood now at Lifeblood.

Supports Ben's Mo Space and follow his journey.