Spanning the month of November, the Movember charity encourages people to grow moustaches in an attempt to raise awareness of men’s health issues such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men’s mental health.
What is Movember?
The term, Movember, stems from the creation of the Movember foundation in 2003 in an attempt to raise awareness of men’s health issues.
Friends Travis Garone and Luke Slattery challenged 30 people to grow a moustache, and the money raised from this challenge grew into something so much bigger.
Since 2003, the foundation has now funded more than 1,250 men’s health projects around the world.
The charity focuses particularly on mental health problems, suicide prevention, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer.
Why is it so important?
The fact men’s health is important may seem obvious, but it is the statistics that show there is always something else that can be done to help save lives.
Globally, more than 1.4 million men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, and one in eight men in the UK will receive a diagnosis of the disease in their lifetimes.
For men, developing an understanding of the signs of the disease and understanding that there is support out there to help if a diagnosis comes is crucial.
Similarly with testicular cancer, it is the most common cancer that affects young men, even though there is a high survival rate.
As well as highlighting the cancer risks, Movember looks to spread awareness of the fact that three out of every 4 suicides in the UK are by men.
Whilst there has been a movement in this generation encouraging men to be more open and honest about their mental health, the reality is that some men still do not feel comfortable doing so.
What is the main target of Movember?
The main target of the month is to create a dialogue surrounding every aspect of men’s health that is ever-present.
The Movember foundation want every man to be aware of the risks to their health and to be educated in spotting the signs as soon as possible, whether it be physical or mental.
If men are provided with the facts, the hope is that they will be able to act to help themselves and others in combatting health problems.
Men also need to know that they do have support networks out there if they are struggling with their health and need help with making important, life-changing decisions.
The end goal is for men to live longer and healthier lives, which is why the seemingly simple act of growing a moustache stands for so much more.