May 19th, 2015

In partnership with Prevention Institute, we are proud to announce a new initiative to help address the poor state of mental health in men and boys in the U.S.

Where The Money Goes
The Movember Foundation, in partnership with Prevention Institute, is proud to announce this pioneering new initiative to help address the poor state of mental health in men and boys in the United States. The work has been developed based on a detailed landscape report Making Connections for Mental Health and Wellbeing Among Men and Boys in the U.S. that was released last year.

This report confirmed that mental health problems are pervasive and extensive in the U.S. Across the interviews and the reports reviewed, consistent themes, trends, and challenges for men and boys emerged, including:
  • American society produces anxiety and is full of risk and stressors
  • Disconnection and isolation—from community, peers, family, children and culture—are major factors that undermine men’s mental health
  • Trauma, and its associated symptoms of mental and psychological illness, is more prevalent in the U.S. than in most other countries around the world
  • Boys and men of color are disproportionately impacted by trauma in the U.S.
  • Military service members, veterans, and their families, experience trauma and its effects at a disproportionate rate
To address these issues, we will work through the Prevention Institute in the U.S. to create programs that meet men and boys where they are, in their community, to promote resilience across generations. In its initial stages, the Making Connections initiative will focus on specific communities across the U.S where programs will be funded to develop and implement actionable, community-level prevention plans to improve mental health. A number of the resulting themes from the report have shaped the initiative, including:
  • Prevention programs are effective but they are not at scale to maximize community-level impact
  • Population-level prevention strategies are not well developed despite the analysis that underlying community-level conditions are a part of the problem
  • Indigenous and lay people approaches are emerging that support healing and mental wellbeing
  • Resilience is a critical protective factor for mental wellbeing
  • There is an emerging need to focus specifically on men and boys’ mental health
Through innovation, collaboration and sharing of lessons learned along the way, the Making Connections initiative will inform policymakers, funders, practitioners, and communities about the value of community-level approaches in support of improving mental health outcomes.

Feeling connected and feeling (a sense of) belonging to community, trust in the community, in the leadership—these give people a sense of greater wellbeing. These are the preventive factors that enable people to better change the sources of stress or change one’s reactions to stressful situations.” 
- Interviewee from Making Connections Landscape Report