THIS month, men around the globe are growing a moustache for Movember and, for one teacher in Holywell, there is a very personal reason for his drive to raise awareness of men’s health issues.

Darren Higgins, a physics teacher at Ysgol Treffynnon, is leading the school’s Movember fundraiser and it’s the second year that he and a team of staff have taken part.

He said: “A few years ago, my cousin committed suicide. It was devastating and completely shook us all. We had an idea that he was struggling with his mental health, but he turned down help when it was offered and therefore, we missed chances to help him.

"After experiencing the loss and shock associated with suicide, I wanted to do my bit to make sure that no other family has to go through that. All too often men keep their feelings bottled up, but a chat with friends and family might help make all the difference."

Last year, Darren was joined by fellow science teachers Matt Warwick and Steve Holmes and English teacher Tom Hopkins who together raised £145 for the charity.

So far this month, and strengthened by additional staff members - director of learning Mark Seale, maths teacher Stephen Mealor and classroom assistant Tom Davies - the team has more than tripled that amount, raising an impressive £417.

Throughout the month, conversations about men’s cancers and mental health issues have been taking place in lessons and around the school.

Mr Higgins added: “The maturity and input from students has been brilliant. They are understanding the reasons behind Movember and being very supportive.

“I have already gone past the fundraising target for the year, but more importantly for me are the conversations taking place. That is partly why there is not a great 'money' push with the students and parents. They can, and do, their part by talking to the men and boys in their families and friendship groups. This is so important; we must stop men dying too young.”

To support the team’s Movember fundraising efforts, go to