November 1 kicks off Movember, a global fundraiser for men’s health initiatives. This movement started in 2003 with two men in Melbourne, Australia and 18 years later it has developed into a global campaign with over 6 million participants (called aptly Mo Bros and Mo Sisters).
In recent years, Movember has grown from a fundraiser to help fight prostate cancer to an awareness campaign covering a range of men’s health issues including, mental health, suicide prevention and testicular cancer. According to Movember.com, “Since 2006, we’ve funded the development of 54 inventions, 70 therapies and 107 diagnostic tests for prostate cancer. Over 1,250 men’s health projects funded since 2003.”
Why is Movember important?
Our organization is built upon the foundation of serving others, from William Henry Letterman and Charles Pages Thomas Moore staying at Jefferson College during the typhoid epidemic to care for their fellow classmates to modern day philanthropic events held by each individual chapter. It is important that we look out for not only our fellow brothers but our friends, family and loved ones. Movember is an opportunity to participate and educate ourselves about men’s health and help others.
Movember.com provides a great deal of resources for suicide prevention and getting help. They provide information on spotting the signs of depression and in-depth explanations on the ALEC (Ask, Listen, Encourage, Check-in) model to encourage others to seek professional help. They’ve also launched Movember conversations described below:
“Developed by mental health experts and funded by Movember, Movember Conversations is an online tool for those who want to feel more confident and informed when navigating an important conversation with a friend who might be struggling. Using multiple choice, Movember Conversations guides you through typical scenarios, teaching the kind of conversational prompts and responses that help to open up a conversation and keep it flowing meaningfully.”
Check out the tool here: conversations.movember.com
You can find facts and figures to help you stay fully informed about prostate cancer on Movember’s webpage. From their site they note that “prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men in the United States. Globally, more than 1.4 million men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year.”
Movember has formulated a global action plan in which their goal is to cut the number of men dying and experiencing serious side effects from prostate cancer in half. They believe the key to this is funding innovative strategies to fight against prostate cancer and its side effects, like the Movember founded program True North.
“True North is a global prostate cancer program developed by Movember to help improve outcomes and quality of life for men diagnosed with prostate cancer. With the help of clinicians, researchers, health organizations and user feedback, True North aims to provide information, resources and support to help men navigate the prostate cancer journey.”
You can learn more about Movember’s fight against prostate cancer and find educational materials here: https://us.movember.com/about/prostate-cancer
While the survival rate of testicular cancer is high, 95% according to Movember.com, there are often many harrowing side effects that come with the current treatment options. Movember is focused on helping men, often young, who have survived testicular cancer get back to living full and happy lives after long-term treatment related side effects. Their goal is by the year 2030 to cut the number in half of men dying and experiencing serious side effects from treatment of testicular cancer.
Movember, like their approach to prostate cancer, has laid out a global action plan in which funding community education and innovative research is the driving factor behind reaching their goal. To learn more about testicular cancer, the signs and symptoms, along with the work that Movember is funding check out their page here: https://us.movember.com/about/testicular-cancer
How Can I Get Involved?
There are a variety of ways to participate in Movember!
Ready to grow your Mo (Moustache)? Sign up and read the rules at https://us.movember.com/get-involved/moustaches. Committing to growing a Mo gives you the opportunity to start the conversation around men’s health. Once signed up, you will be able to share your fundraising page (Mo Space) with others to help Movember initiatives.
Not so fond on growing the Mo? No worries, Movember wants you to Make a Move by running or walking 60 miles over the month of November. Each hour 60 men commit suicide. By committing to Moving for Movember you will help fund initiatives that champion men’s mental health. Get moving and sign up here: https://us.movember.com/get-involved/move
Another great option is to Host a Mo-ment. Movember encourages participants to gather together safely, in-person or virtually, to fundraise and raise awareness about men’s health. You can make this event as simple or complex as you want – Movember suggests things like a gaming tournament or a trivia night. Sign up and find resources about how to host your own mo-ment here: https://us.movember.com/get-involved/host
Finally, Movember encourages everyone to Mo Your Own Way. They say, “whether it’s a grueling test of physical endurance or a not-so-sweaty pledge to kick a bad habit. Whether it’s a day, over several weeks or across the year – take whatever Mo Your Own Way means to you and run with it.” Movember wants to encourage others to start the conversation around men’s health and support the cause to help initiatives that will radically change lives. Sign up to Mo Your Own Way here: https://us.movember.com/get-involved/mo-your-own-way