Real health care for real men!

Men’s Health week will run Monday 10th to Sunday 16th June this year.

The theme for 2013 is “Action Men – Turning Words into Actions” and there is definitely a need to do this as a broad range of research highlights that men experience a disproportionate burden of ill health and die too young. For example, men in Ireland die on average, almost five years younger than women do, males have higher death rates than women for all of the leading causes of death and men are three times more likely than women to die by suicide.

Even though many of these conditions are preventable their prevalence among men may rise in the future.

In an effort to help men get real about their health and to encourage them to turn their words into action the four Community Networks Causeway Rural and Urban Network, North Antrim Community Network, South Antrim Community Network and Cookstown and Western Shores Area Network in association with ZEST, healing the hurt and a broad range of health providers have joined forces to help men access health services, support and advise by staging five Strictly male only health events for men.

The events are FREE as funded by the Public Health Agency and one will take place on Thursday 20th June – 7:30pm til 9:30pm The Auditorium at Ballymoney Town Hall.

Part of the problem is that many men find it hard to come forward and discuss their health as they have been brought up to behave in a certain way that society expects of them and this creates a masculine gold standard which men often then compare themselves against. This in turn creates a feeling of shame and defeat. Men are likely to use drugs or alcohol in response to distress which can be caused in part by relationship breakdown, social or emotional disconnectedness, unemployment and the impact of recession.

Conor McCafferty from Zest will talk on what it means to be a man and he will get behind the statistics and look into the real lives of men to tackle the root causes of men’s ill health and help men to take action now and be equipped to face the challenges of 21st century living.

There will be a range of interactive and totally free health activities and no nonsense advice at each of these events followed by a hearty supper.

If you wish to find out more information or want to register your interest please contact:

Amanda Pollock, Suicide Prevention Development Worker – NACN & CRUN – 02821772100 for the Ballymoney event.