In the Barber Chair with Matt Caputo
Matt CaputoImage by: Movember
In the Barber Chair with Matt Caputo
In the Barber Chair with Matt Caputo
In the Barber Chair with Matt Caputo
26 October 2021

In the Barber Chair with Matt Caputo

4 minutes read time

For Matt Caputo, a longtime Mo Bro and the founder and the co-organizer of the Moustache Classic ice hockey outing that raises funds through Movember for men's cancer and suicide prevention, having men feel like they are a part of a community is paramount to balancing mental health. Matt sat down with us in the barber chair recently to chat with us about challenges in his life, the importance of having a community and more.

What advice do you give to the guys that come to the hockey tournament?

One of the things that I think we all learned from being a part of the Moustache Classic hockey tournament was that we are a part of something greater than us, even when we're alone. And I think that's what really resonated with me. You know, I had so many guys after that checked up on me and considered me their friend and wanted to introduce me to guys that they know and include me in things. And that happened for a lot of guys. You know, I want guys to come [to the Classic] from far and wide. I want guys to feel like they're a part of something that wants them to be a part of something, you know? 

Why do you support Movember and mental health?

Matt: I think that the November story starts for me as far back as I could dad kind of grew up without his dad as a result of testicular cancer, which at the time when my grandfather got testicular cancer, was nothing short of a death sentence. And over time, I heard that this was more and more treatable. I kind of felt robbed by it to a degree. I kind of felt robbed by the fact that they said that it was more treatable. 

And as years went on, I thought it was a nice way to have some type of connection with myself and my grandfather that I had no possible way of meeting. But I really didn't get involved like I have where it's really taken over one quarter of the year of my life now, until about 20... we started the

Moustache Classic in 2019, but a couple of years before that a really close and influential friend of mine, Richard, killed himself.

" Struggles are not only about having a mental imbalance – sometimes it’s where you are in life at that time that can make you sad and challenge you "

The biggest thing that I learned from Richard's death was you can get involved in doing good, no matter what it is that you're involved with. And no matter what you're passionate about, there's a way to do good, and there's a way to touch people. You know what I mean? And I think that overall, that's what we try to do [with the Moustache Classic]. We try to do something that I'm passionate about the way Richard would've done it.

And the best thing is that Movember makes it possible for anybody who likes hockey, anybody involved with beer league hockey to actually support us. So once the Moustache Classic team page launches, people are going to be able to donate to us from around the world. And it's happened. People have donated to us from Canada. I have people flying in from Arizona for this. I have people coming in from Ohio. It's really a powerful thing.

And a lot of people who couldn't come were able to donate and contribute and buy some of the stuff that we had to give away. And that's one of the biggest things. So if you can support beer league hockey, if you're a part of it, if you can't make it out to Danbury, Connecticut on November 20th, look on Movember's page. We're there. We're going to raise the most out of any hockey group again. And if we don't, I hope that somebody else's group comes up and challenges us, because there's a lot of money needed for this, you know? There's a lot of support needed for this.

What takeaways on mental health do you have from being involved in the Moustache Classic?

Struggles are not only about having a mental imbalance – sometimes it’s where you are in life at that time that can make you sad and challenge you. It's happened to me, probably my entire life.

And I think that that's the biggest thing that we identify in these guys that we see in the Classic.

We have guys with full pensions, houses, a couple of cars, and there's something that they feel like they're missing. And I think if we encourage them to feel like they're a part of something, then everybody's doing what we're supposed to do. Movember, myself, the Moustache Classic, and all the guys involved.