Thursday, 20 June 2013

Men, men, men in the media


It’s been a lively few weeks for men’s issue on the national stage since Diane Abbott evoked a debate about the “crisis of masculinity” last month.

Here we provide a snapshot of some of the key media coverage about men and boys in recent weeks.

As the shadow minister for public health, Diane Abbott’s thoughts on men’s issues are worth following. While the media focussed on the more lurid aspects of her speech on masculinity, there was less reporting of the fact that she highlighted men’s poor health and shorter life expectancy, male suicide, male homelessness, substance abuse in men, men’s higher risk of cancer, the impact of unemployment and the recession on men and the under-performance of boys in education.

Glen Poole of Helping Men wrote about Abbott’s speech from at The Guardian and The Good Men Project and also highlighted a less well publicized speech by Labour’s policy co-ordinator, Phil Cruddas in the New Statesman.

Cruddas gave some pointers on Labour’s new thinking around family policy in particular saying that party would do more to value fathers. And dads continued to make headlines thanks to the arrival of Fathers’ Day. The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ), a think tank founded by Iain Duncan Smith when the Conservatives were in opposition, made the biggest headlines with a report stating that 1 million children have no contact with their fathers. 

They also created a new phrase --- that may or may not catch on --- for areas where children lack male role models generally, which the CSJ now calls ‘man deserts’. Later in the week, David Lammy MP unveiled his own report on fatherhood for the Labour Party policy review. Interestingly, while Lammy and the CSJ took very different tones, some of their key recommendations --- like helping the public sector engage more effectively with fathers --- were the same.

For a snapshot of some of the key fatherhood issues being discussed in the run up to Fathers’ Day, see The Observers leader: Dads aren’t duds, they deserve a better deal.

The week before Fathers’ Day is Men’s Health Week, which this year focussed on men’s mental health. This sparked a great article from Luke Sullivan at Men’s Minds Matter on some of the key mental health challenges facing men.

The surprise revelation that Stephen Fry attempted suicide last year also brought more focus to men’s mental health concerns and was covered intelligently by Ally Fogg at The Guardian.

And the power of celebrity was demonstrated in unexpected fashion when Michael Douglas claimed to have contracted HPV-related throat cancer through oral sex. This sparked renewed calls to give boys the HPV vaccine as well as girls. 

All in all, we've see lots of great debates and conversations about men and boys in the past few weeks, let's hope it continues throughout 2013.

Join us at the National Conference for Men and Boys


Helping Men will be taking part in the Third National Conference for Men and Boys 2013 this  September, so why not come along and meet us there.

It is the UK’s biggest gathering of people committed to improving the lives of men and boys.
This year’s event takes place in Brighton & Hove and is hosted by a committed team of volunteers from the All Men Project. The team says it aims to provide something for everyone who thinks differently about men and boys and each event has a different flavour and focus.

The primary aim of the event is to connect professionals and volunteers who are actively engaged in improving men and boy’s lives in areas like health, mental, fatherhood, criminal justice, crime prevention, social justice, housing and homelessness, youth work, social work, social cafe, education, therapeutic services, men’s work, mentoring, rites of passage, men’s groups, men’s rights and so on.

Tobook your tickets to this event see www.mensconferenceuk.wordpress.com

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

COURSE: How are Men and Boys Unequal?


How are Men and Boys Unequal (and what can we do about it)?

Helping Men has designed a new course for anyone concerned with issues of gender equality called How are Men and Boys Unequal (and what can we do about it)?

Who’s the course for?

The course is designed for all professionals concerned with any aspect of equalities work and in particular those who focus on matters of sex equality and gender equality. 

What are the aims of the course?

The aim of this course is to leave you with a deeper understanding of how to include men and boys in your equalities thinking. This one day workshops helps you to explore ways in which we can tackle the inequalities that men and boys face, as well as finding ways to engage men and boys as change agents who can help promote equality for all. 

What will you learn on the course?
  • The key inequalities that men and boys experience
  • What the law says you should be doing to address these inequalities
  • How working with men and boys can benefit women and girls
  • The key barriers that men and boys face
  • How you can become more effective at promoting gender equality 
Key course content:

Men, Boys and Equality. How do we measure inequality? What are the key inequalities that men and boys face as a distinct group with specific needs? What does the law say about the ways we should be including men and our equalities work?

How Does This Help Women? Gender equality work is often thought to be a zero-sum game, which means that if one side wins, the other side loses. How does tackling the inequalities that men and boys face help women and girls and how can we ensure that focussing on men and boys helps to promote equality for all?

The Barriers that Men Face. One of the key themes of equalities work is identifying and addressing the barriers that different groups face. So what are the key barriers that men and boys face and what can we do to help overcome them?

New Approaches to Gender Equality. This final session provides some great examples of good practice to help you tackle the inequalities that men and boys face. We’ll also support you to explore and identify ways in which you can work with men and boys in the future to help promote equality for all.

How can I take the course?

“How are Men and Boys Unequal (and what can we do about it)?” can be delivered as an in-house course anywhere in the UK. We also hold open courses at various times throughout the year

The next "How are Men and Boys Unequal?" course will be held in Brighton on Tuesday 23rd July to find out how to book your place today click here now.

To find out more about this or any of our courses and services contact Glen Poole at Helping Men on 07981 334222 or email glen@glenpoole.com






COURSE: Why Do Men Lead Unhealthy Lives


Why Do Men Lead Unhealthy Lives (and what can we do about it)?”

Helping Men has designed a new course for anyone concerned with improving men’s health called “Why Do Men Lead Unhealthy Lives (and what can we do about it)?”

Who’s the course for?

The course is designed for all professionals concerned with any aspect of health improvement, from commissioning services to delivering frontline interventions. If your work involves improving people’s health, then this one day workshop could make a difference for you. 

What are the aims of the course?

The aim of this course is to leave you with a deeper understanding of how and why men lead unhealthy lives and give you the knowledge you need to engage more men in health improvement activities in the short term and help prevent men’s poor health in the long term.

What will you learn on the course?
  • The latest evidence on the links between men’s lifestyle and health outcomes
  • How to identify the underlying causes of men’s unhealthy lifestyle
  • How you can make it easier for men to get help and support
  • Which approaches to improving men’s health work best
  • What actions you can take to improve men’s health

Key Course Content:

How do men lead unhealthy lives? In this session we look at the very latest information on the links between men’s behaviours---including diet, exercise, smoking, drinking, stress, risk taking and occupational health issues--- and their health outcomes, such as life expectancy, cancers, heart health, weight etc. 

What are the key causes of men’s unhealthy behaviours? In this session we will consider to what extent gender is a social determinant of men’s poor health and explore the latest evidence on how gender intersects with other key determinants such as income, social class, education, race, sexuality, disability, relationship status, employment status, peer groups etc.

What do we know about men’s help-seeking behaviours? It is often said that ‘men don’t get help’. The truth is that different men will approach getting help in different ways depending on a variety of factors. In this session we bring together a broad range of research to give you a more complex understanding of men’s help-seeking behaviour. This will ultimately make it simpler for you to enable more men to seek help and take better care of their health in future.

What works and why? The final session focuses on the actions you can take in future to help men live healthier lives. This is achieved through a combination of sharing good practice that has been shown to make a difference and taking time to re-assess your service and identify new opportunities for action.

How can I take the course?

“Why Do Men Lead Unhealthy Lives (and what can we do about it)?” can be delivered as an in-house course anywhere in the UK. We also hold open courses at various times throughout the year

The next Why Do Men Lead Unhealthy Lives course will be held in Brighton on Wednesday 17th July to find out how to book your place today click here now.

Or to find out more about this or any of our courses and services contact Glen Poole at Helping Men on 07981 334222 or email glen@glenpoole.com.