What is Movember and what does it mean for men’s mental health?

Movember is the face of men’s health including mental health and suicide. Credit: Ben Axson

EACH November, millions of men pledge to grow a moustache in support of the Movember Foundation.

Movember is the leading charity changing the face of men’s health, including raising awareness over prostate cancer, testicular cancer and also mental health and suicide prevention.

Since it was launched in 2003, the charity has funded more than 1,250 men’s health projects around the world, transforming the way health services reach and support men.

By encouraging men to be more aware of their health, the charity aims to break the stigma around men’s health and ultimately reduce the number of preventable deaths.

In 2020, £19.1 million was raised in the United Kingdom by Movember with 81.8% of the funds raised being allocated to men’s health projects.

One of the main areas that the charity focuses on is men’s mental health.

It is reported that the rate of male suicide is alarmingly high, with three out of four suicides in the UK by men. There was a reported rise in male suicides in Hampshire last year. 

Men accounted for more than three-quarters of suicide deaths registered in Southampton over three years – 55 compared with 17 women.

We asked the public what they think could be done to get men talking about their mental health.

Solent Mind is a local mental health charity which is part of a network of over 100 local minds who offer trusted mental health services to our communities.

The charity will be hosting a Men’s Mental Health Livestream on Friday 19 November on Facebook. This follows a group from the charity running a podcast titled ‘Let’s Talk Mate’, which focuses on men’s mental health.

Lachlan Marais-Gilchrist, outreach co-ordinator for Solent Mind, said: “The main aim of the Facebook show is to normalise men talking about mental health so that other men feel more able to do this themselves.

“By doing this, we’re hoping that our listeners can be more easily recognised that mental health is something that applies to men and that it can be actively managed.”

By Megan Lenthall (@megantamzin), Isabelle Hellstedt (@IsaHellstedt), Lewis Butcher (@LewisButcher16)