1 March 2020


The game-changing men’s mental health programs set to scale
Mental Health | Where The Money Goes

Globally, on average, one man dies by suicide every minute of every day.
Suicide is incredibly complex. But we know that improving overall mental health and having strong social connections can reduce the risk of suicide.
In 2015 Movember launched the ‘Social Innovators Challenge’, a project set up to find and test innovative ideas that would raise awareness of the risks associated with poor social connections. 
We focused on men who are at greater risk of becoming socially isolated – new dads, unemployed men, divorced men and men of low socio-economic status – looking for potential solutions that would appeal to men, strengthen their social connectedness and reduce loneliness.
After an initial investment of $5.6m AUD in programs across the UK, Canada and Australia, we are now investing a further $3.7m AUD in the most promising schemes.
Three will be scaled up over the next three years and a further three will receive additional funding from Movember for up to 18 months.

“We know that once we hit our 30s, men generally aren’t as attentive to our social relationships as we should be."

“We know that once we hit our 30s, men generally aren’t as attentive to our social relationships as we should be,” says Brendan Maher, Global Director, Mental Health & Suicide Prevention.

“This can have far-reaching consequences because we know that strong social connections are a key protective factor for men against anxiety, depression and potentially suicide.

“Movember’s Social Innovators Challenge has allowed us to uncover, nurture and develop fresh ideas to keep men connected.

“This exciting next phase will build upon the critical evidence and success of some of our most promising initiatives.”

Programs that are scaling:
WOW Sand n Surf – delivered by Waves of Wellness (Australia)
WOW Sand n Surf connects men from all walks of life, using surfing as a tool for social connection. The six-week programme equips men with skills to better manage their mental health and wellbeing.

See the program in action by clicking here, or learn more at foundationwow.org.

The Changing Room – delivered by the Scottish Association for Mental Health (Scotland)
The Changing Room is using the lure, excitement and power of professional football to bring together men aged 30-64. The programme gives these men the opportunity to tackle mental health on their home turf.

See the program in action by click here, or learn more at hibs.thechangingroom.org.uk.

Dad HERO – delivered by the Canadian Family and Corrections Network (Canada)
Dad HERO (Helping Everyone Realize Opportunities) helps incarcerated dads transition back into their family lives by teaching them about parenting, the father-child bond, how children grow, why their children need them and how to communicate with them.

Learn more at cfcn-rcafd.org/dadhero.

Programs receiving additional funding:

Brothers Through Boxing — delivered by Boxing Futures (UK)
Young men are one of the most at-risk population groups when it comes to feelings of loneliness and social isolation. Brothers Through Boxing is a peer-led boxercise programme designed to address this by building social connections.

See the program in action by clicking here, or learn more at brothersthroughboxing.org.uk/the-programme.

Men’s Pie Club – delivered by Food Nation (UK)
The premise for Men’s Pie Club is simple: men like eating pies, so why not learn to cook them while connecting with other men? Pie Club brings men together to cook and eat pies and much more leading to improved social connectedness, nutrition, physical and mental health.

See the program in action by clicking here, or learn more at  facebook.com/menspieclub.

Ex-Cell 50+ – delivered by Cooperative and Mutual Solutions (UK)
This programme is helping older men, who are ex-offenders, to build relationships and increase their level of social connection. The methodology is around helping people help each other as they seek solutions to their common problems.

Learn more at ex-cell.org.uk.