November – the month of men’s mental health.
It’s that time of year as the popular phenomenon of Movember rolls around again. This initiative of growing out your facial hair signifies the importance of men’s health, both mental and physical.
The unique association, which was originally created back in 2003, spreads awareness on men’s mental health and suicide prevention, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer. With its 15th year in Ireland, this movement is not going out of style any time soon.
So, what is Ireland doing for men’s health in 2023? Our very own University of Galway Law Society are the stars of the show for fundraising in Galway this year. Many law students are individually taking part in Movember and their progress can be tracked on the official Movember website or through the Law Society Instagram page! The society are certainly keeping busy this month as they are also creating events in order to fundraise for their official November charity. Donations can be made to this website.
The popular taxi company FREENOW is also participating this year and partnering with Movember right up until February 2024! You can donate through the FREENOW app by ‘rounding up’ your taxi fare to the nearest euro, meaning the difference will go to the Movember charities! No matter how little, every cent helps with this feature on FREENOW as it is the leading taxi app in Ireland. According to a survey done by the official Movember charity, 68% of FREENOW drivers say that having a chat with a passenger has a positive impact on their own mental health and well-being. This partnership with leading Irish companies like FREENOW is an important step for the Movember organisation, as it spreads awareness through customs we’d use frequently in our daily life.
Are you showing your support by letting go of your shaving routine this November? Of course, the most important part is spreading awareness and donating to well-deserved charities. Growing the Mo’ is simply just for fun! Nevertheless, if you do choose to have excess facial hair throughout November, you become a poster boy for men’s health. The moustache is a symbol of support for men, and while it may feel futile, you take part in sparking important conversations regarding mental health or male-related cancers. If you spot a Movember advocate by their newly grown moustache, you can surely count on them to care about your well-being!
This campaign is becoming increasingly important in Ireland as concerns for men’s mental health continue to grow daily. Staggering statistics from the official Movember site show that 302 men died by suicide in Ireland in 2021. Another statistic shows that around one in every eight people in Ireland know someone who was close to them that died by suicide. These facts tell us that Movember is one of the most important fudraisers currently in Ireland, and we should absolutely prioritise getting involved.
That being said, here are three ways that you can participate in Movember; either during the last few days of November, or to keep in mind for next year.
1. Check out the Movember partners and make sure you support them! This could mean attending fundraisers, or using the FREENOW taxi app and rounding up your fare.
2. Simply donate to individual Movember charity members. The price of a coffee goes a long way for mental health projects in Ireland, or the Irish Prostate Cancer Outcomes Registry.
3. Become a charity member yourself and grow your Mo’. Track your moustache progress on social media as a way to entertain your followers, this may result in more donations for the Movember cause!
And remember: caring about your health is not limited to one month of the year. Your health is always a priority. If you have been affected by the topics discussed and need immediate support, please contact a helpline listed below.
The Samaritans: Free call 116 123. Available 24/7.
Pieta House: Call 1800 247 247.