Don't we all just dream about bearded, burly mermen raising money for charity? Well dream come true! The Newfoundland & Labrador Beard and Mustache Club partnered with Spirit Horse NL to create a calendar of "Merb'ys" to raise money for a good cause. What exactly is a "Merb'y" you ask? It is a combination of the words "mermaid" and "b'y" which is a term meaning "buddy" or "boy" in Newfoundland. This calendar features brawny men on each page dressed in mermaid tails with scenic backgrounds. These Merb'ys raised over $300,000 for Spirit Horse with the sales of their unique page-turning calendar. According to the Newfoundland & Labrador Beard and Mustache Club website, "Spirit Horse NL aims to enhance the mental health and life skills of youth, adults, families, and groups through therapeutic interaction with horses.” Why did the men choose mermaids to raise money for Spirit Horse? According to the founder of the club, Hasan Hai, the idea came to him when his friend sent a mermaid photo his way on Facebook. Hai states, "I’m the kind of fellow who embraces challenges and fun and whimsical ways of fund-raising for good causes, so I embraced the life aquatic … and dove in." Hai explains that even though the calendar shoot is silly and fun, he really wants to break the mold of society’s view of masculinity and thought this was a good way to do so. In terms of choosing to support Spirit Horse, Hai states, “They’re desperately in need of funds and awareness because it’s expensive to raise and upkeep horses and I figured right away that this is a cause our club to get behind." Well, it's safe to say his funky idea paid off! Cheers to these Merb'ys and raising money for a great cause in a whole new way.
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