Movember: Changing the face of men’s health

By Jacob Condo, Contributing Writer

Movember has made its way to UMass Dartmouth this month, promoting awareness for the health issues facing the well being of the men of the world: mental, physical and emotional.

This month of events and activities is being put on by the Movember Foundation, and is sponsored by the Student Activities Involvement and Leadership office, Live Well, and UMass Dartmouth Athletics and Recreation.

All the events are geared towards getting men informed about the dangers of health risks they may be suppressing.

Health risks that many men don’t feel comfortable talking about such as testicular and prostate cancer, mental illness, and suicide prevention.

About 220,800 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer last year, and about 8,720 cases of testicular cancer are diagnosed each year.

Testicular cancer also occurs most commonly in males from 15-34. To be sure, a lot of young men are dying from these afflictions, but that’s not the only epidemic.

One in five adults suffers from mental illness experience mental illness in a year. Fifty five percent of men suffer from at least one form of mental disorder, and they are three and a half times more likely to die by suicide than women.

These statistics only cover men’s health in the United States. Men all over the globe suffer from and are lost to these conditions, which can only be treated if they are diagnosed early-on.

The Movember Foundation’s goal according to their website is “stopping men dying too young”, and they are the only charity raising awareness for men’s health on a global scale. Through events like the ones being hosted here on campus, they have raised $170 million since they began in 2003.

One day in November of that year, two Australian friends (Travis Garone and Luke Slattery) were talking over beers and under moustaches. They stumbled upon an idea about how to raise awareness about men’s health.

Inspired by a friend’s mom fundraising for breast cancer, the group was created. It was then that they decided to do the same for men’s health and prostate cancer.

Charging ten dollars per “Mo”, or mustache, they sent out an email to thirty friends challenging them to grow out their lip-hair in solidarity.

It was from these humble beginnings that Movember started fundraising for men’s health organizations all over the globe.

They did this by funding events like the ones going on all month here on campus. These events not only encourage more people to donate money to the Movember Foundation, they help to educate the public.

While Movember raises money for awareness, the cause is useless without young men getting checked for cancer or speaking up about emotional problems they’re having.

All the posters dotted across the campus grounds state that the purpose behind Movember is “changing the face of men’s health.”

The foundation’s goal is to create a fun and safe atmosphere where young men can feel comfortable talking and learning about these health issues, and how to cope with and prevent them.

For more information on Movember and a full calendar, visit SAIL’s Official Facebook Page.


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