Psychology and Allied Health Services

Movember 2023

It’s Movember!

For the month of November, the focus is on men’s health and wellbeing. Movember started in 2003 with 30 “Mo Bros” with the campaign focusing on men’s health and prostate cancer. Fast-forward 20 years, Movember is a well-known campaign that has grown to include over 6 million Mo Bros. It aims to raise awareness about health issues effecting men, as well as funds for men’s health projects. Health issues for men include prostate cancer, testicular cancer, but also mental health and suicide. The rate of male suicide is alarmingly high: 3 out of 4 suicides in Australia are by men. Movember looks at mental health through the lens of prevention, early intervention and health promotion. The aim is to work towards a world where men take action to be mentally well and are supported by those around them.

So what can you do to help?

If you spot a friend whose behaviour is out of character, that’s your sign to check in with them. Signs that they might be in distress include :

  • – Not sleeping
  • Eating less or more than usual
  • Avoiding social situations
  • Going quiet on social media or messaging apps
  • Being more irritable than usual
  • Missing social or sports events
  • Forgetting grooming (no clean clothes, not showering or brushing teeth)
  • Talking of death and dying or increased hopelessness

Use ALEC to start a conversation.
A = Ask – Start by asking how they’re feeling. It’s worth mentioning any changes you’ve picked up on. Use a prompt like, “You haven’t seemed yourself lately – are you feeling OK?” Remember, people often say “I’m fine” when they’re not, so don’t be afraid to ask twice.
L= Listen – Give them your full attention. Let them know you’re hearing what they’re saying and you’re not judging. You don’t have to diagnose problems or offer solutions, but asking questions lets them know you’re listening. Ask a question like: “That can’t be easy – how long have you felt this way?”
E= Encourage Action – Help them focus on simple things that might improve how they feel. And if they’ve felt low for more than two weeks, suggest they chat to their doctor.
C= Check in – Follow up your conversation with a phone call or FaceTime. This helps to show that you care; plus, you’ll get a feel for whether they’re feeling any better.

For more information about the campaign and ways you can show your support, head to

Our team at Minding Family Townsville would be happy to provide further support to you or a loved one to assist with managing stress, anxiety, depression, or other concerns relating to mental health and wellbeing. Please contact us on 47 238 221 to discuss pathways for referral.