We’re not talking about Christmas, we’re talking about Movember.
It’s the time of year when men across the globe ditch their razors for a good cause.
Although it’s great fun seeing our friends, family and colleagues sporting comedy ‘taches, such as the Tom Selleck or the Hulk Hogan, there’s a serious reason at the heart of the campaign.
Movember is the leading global men’s health charity and its aim is to stop men dying too young.
Around the world, brothers, partners, sons and fathers are all dying younger than they should and the Movember Foundation is trying to reverse this fact by tackling some of the biggest killers: prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide.
In the past 15 years, Movember has been able to fund more than 1,200 men’s health projects worldwide and its aim by 2030 is to reduce the number of men dying prematurely by 25 per cent.
So what has the organisation achieved?
Prostate and testicular cancer
More men are being diagnosed with prostate cancer and, although survival rates are improving, there’s still a lot of work to be done.
The Movember Foundation is funding biomedical research projects to better understand the disease and identify better treatments.
Take the Global Action Plan: an initiative that’s tackling some of the biggest challenges in prostate and testicular cancer.
Here in the UK, one of those projects is examining if and how intensive exercise and psycho-social support can increase overall survival in patients with advanced prostate cancer.
For men with advanced disease, these types of programmes might enable them to live longer – which means more time, in better health, with those they love.
It’s also responsible for leading TrueNTH, an initiative operating in eight countries and is the largest global project designed to improve the quality of life for prostate cancer sufferers and their families.
This could be through clearer treatment information, support from other survivors or simply getting them easier access to healthcare professionals.
TrueNTH innovations, such as a supported self-management program that empowers men to monitor their own symptoms and test results, are beginning to be adopted by NHS Trusts across the UK.
Men diagnosed with testicular cancer can also access TrueNTH Testicular Cancer, which is a great resource for men right from the point of diagnosis, to help them cope with the disease and can be accessed here.
Mental health and suicide prevention
The Movember Foundation has funded programmes all around the world to help support men's resilience and mental well-being, encouraging them to talk about their problems and prevent suicide.
Changing Rooms is a football-based program launched in April 2018, which helps men to manage their own mental health through bringing guys together over a love of football.
After huge success with the first programme at Hibs they are rolling it out to Hearts.
There’s also Ex-Cell 50+, a project that helps older male offenders re-integrate into the community, by giving them the skills to start their own micro-businesses.
The Movember Foundation is completely independent of any government funding – and that’s where you come in.
If you want to Grow a Mo, then head here to find out how to sign up and get the donations rolling in.
If you don’t feel like a moustache is your look, then you can Move and commit to walking or running 60 km, or Host an event.
Your support will change the face of men’s health.
Sign up now at Movember.com.
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