Every year, when November rolls around, everyone gets excited to participate in Movember, from wearing moustaches (real or fake) to raising funds and being part of the month-long movement. However, Movember is not simply about one disease but rather the overall mental health of males and affects of prostate and testicular cancer on their lives.
This month is dedicated to men suffering with a mental or physical illness and growing awareness about these rates and how we can all do our part. But how did it all start? Well let’s go back to 2003, where two mates in Australia went out for a beer one night where they had the brilliant idea of bringing back the moustache. So they made a campaign about men’s health and the rules for it were to charge ten dollars to grow a moustache and found 30 guys up for the challenge. In 2006 the Movember Foundation was born and today 20 countries, including Canada, are official participants, and there are now 6,263,923 official “Mo Bros” and “Mo Sisters” and over 1,250 men’s health projects by the foundations have been funded since 2003.
From local and global initiatives on taking early action, to improving scientific knowledge, increasing affordability of treatment, education on dealing with these illnesses and increasing conversations, the Movember Foundation has really improved the lives of men throughout the globe.
But there is still a long way to go. Millions of people are diagnosed yearly with these cancers from young to old and many men suffer from mental health issues, especially due to social constructs that see opening up and expressing emotion as emasculating. So it is our job to change those things.
And to get to a healthier world for men everywhere, knowing the statistics and getting a sense of where we stand now is important. So UBC Cancer Association has provided the “all you need to know about Movember” infographic below: A Beginner’s Guide.
This way we can all be a bit more mindful next time we celebrate and participate in Movember and do more for our communities and the world. Happy Movember from the UBC Cancer Association!