On November 19th, every year, we celebrate a special day: International Men’s Day. It is the lesser known day in comparison to International Women’s Day, but still holds a great significance in what it promotes each year. We celebrate to raise awareness about men’s health, gender equality and highlight the contributions men of today are making to society. We wanted to pay homage to the significance of International Men’s Day.
The Health and Wellness of Men
It is common knowledge that over the years, men have been taught to suppress their emotions, which has led to a steady increase in men’s mental health issues. International Men’s Day aims to shine a light on this, and contribute to more open conversations about men’s struggles. Men should feel comfortable speaking up and asking for help, and be able to do so in a positive environment.
IMD also focuses on Men’s physical health, raising awareness of diseases commonly or solely associated with men such as Cardiovascular disease and prostate cancer. Many men may go a long time before being diagnosed, due to lack of awareness and education or brushing off symptoms. By educating people more of these diseases, it helps for early detection, reducing stigma and encouraging preventative behaviours and practices for the reduction of these diseases.
There have been strong stereotypes placed on men in recent years which can be harmful to their perception. International Men’s Day is an opportunity to advocate for gender equality between men and women, without putting either gender down or in a negative light. The aim is to redefine the conversation. To celebrate masculinity when it is able to be paired with vulnerability, empathy, softness and emotional development.
Promoting Positive Male Role Models
There are so many men doing amazing work, who make for great role models. This is especially essential for young boys to see and have someone to look up to. These men help communities, individual families, and individuals - serving as an inspiration for many. Highlighting these men on International Men’s Day helps to not only showcase the positive impact men can have on society, but help lead the way to what the next generation of men will look like.
Fostering Gender Equality
As briefly mentioned earlier, International Men’s Day is not about overshadowing women and their very real struggles. It is about creating an equality between men and women, which doesn’t involve putting either gender down. It is to combine the power of both men and women to collaborate together to address these challenges: such as gender-based violence, workplace discrimination and societal expectations. As a team, we can try solve these issues to ensure the overall satisfaction and safety of everyone.
International Men’s Day is a joyous day to celebrate the men in our lives, as well as the men in society as a whole. Whilst it has been very important and positive to highlight women in recent years, having a day to also celebrate men and the great impact they can have on the world - whilst also tackling the harder conversations and struggles they face - is also important. IMD aims to promote gender equality, provide education and awareness for men’s struggles and challenges and celebrate the power of people when we work together to face issues.