Movember was initially conceived over a casual beer in a Melbourne pub in 2003. Initially, friends Travis Garone and Luke Slattery, sought to revive the mustache as a fashion statement, challenging 30 men to grow one. Since then, the movement has evolved globally, with over five million supporters across more than 20 countries.
Men face unique health challenges, resulting in shorter lifespans compared to women. On average, men’s lives are cut short by 4.5 years compared to women, often due to largely preventable causes. Movember’s mission is to bridge this gap and foster healthier, longer lives for men. The campaign zeroes on the three pivotal global health issues – mental health, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer – that demand increased research and enhanced healthcare services.
Addressing Global Health Concerns
Mental Health in Men
Globally, 75% to 80% of suicides are attributed to men, and in the UK, approximately 12 men succumb to suicide each day. Male depression has reached a global crisis level, necessitating a gender-specific approach to mental health. Movember delves into the distinctive stressors men face, acknowledging their impact on various aspects of their lives.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. Currently, around 10.8 million men globally are diagnosed with prostate cancer. More than 52,000 men are diagnosed with cancer on average, every year. Of these 12,000 individuals lose their lives to prostate cancer every year. Yet, research funding and improved health services can significantly enhance survival rates and quality of life.
Among younger men, aged 15 to 45, testicular cancer stands as the most common form of cancer worldwide. It is estimated that 8,000 to 10,000 men are diagnosed with testicular cancer each year. An average of about 400 men will die with testicular cancer each year. Early detection and advances in treatment have contributed to a high survival rate.
Empowering Men’s Health
Since its inception in 2003, Movember has raised an impressive GBP 660 million for men’s health. This substantial amount has fueled over 1,250 projects across mental health, suicide prevention, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer. By actively engaging in Movember, individuals contribute to a cause that directly impacts the lives of men globally.
A Collective Effort: Involving All Genders in Movember’s Mission
Movember is not exclusively for men; women can actively participate as well. Through collective efforts, funds are raised, and awareness is generated to support male health issues. Additionally, the Movember Movement Challenge encourages physical activity throughout November, providing an opportunity to raise funds and awareness simultaneously.
By actively engaging in Movember, individuals contribute to a cause that directly impacts the lives of men globally. Some of the foundations that they donate to include:
Making Connections Initiative
Movember, in partnership with the Prevention Institute, funds 13 U.S. communities to enhance mental health for men and boys, with a focus on vulnerable groups. The initiative stems from a 2014 report highlighting challenges, including societal risks and trauma prevalence. Making Connections promotes community-based strategies and resilience-building, aiming to redefine masculinity positively.
The Ironman Registry: Advancing Prostate Cancer Understanding
Ironman is an international, population-based registry of 5,000 men with advanced prostate cancer. Its mission is to comprehensively grasp clinical outcomes associated with advanced prostate cancer management and unravel the biological and clinical diversity of the disease. The registry has created a network of global Local Data Centers and their Participating Sites provide de-identified patient clinical data, including blood samples and patient-reported outcome measures, to the Global Data Coordination Centre.
The Ironman Registry is a Movember Funded Project. Since 2017, the Movember Foundation has globally funded over AUD 18.3 million through ten campaigns.
European Organization for Research and Treatment in Cancer (EORTC)
EORTC is an independent, non-governmental, non-profit cancer research organization established in Belgium. Currently, the EORTC is conducting a study – GAP5 – TIGER Train in relapsing Germ Cell Tumor – across Europe. This multinational clinical trial aims to determine the most effective treatment for preventing relapse-related deaths in men with testicular cancer. The trial involves 420 patients worldwide.
The Movember Foundation has globally funded over EUR 1.3 million for this clinical trial.
Embracing a Healthier Future
Movember sparked in 2003, unites over five million supporters globally. Focusing on mental health, prostate, and testicular cancers, it’s raised GBP 660 million for 1,250+ projects worldwide. Through partnerships like Making Connections and the Ironman Registry, Movember addresses mental health and advances cancer research. With ongoing support, we strive for a world where men lead healthier, happier lives. Together, we break barriers for men’s well-being worldwide.