International Men’s Health Week (IMHW) takes place the second week of June which is the week leading up to father’s day in the many countries worldwide where it is organised. It's the opportunity for everyone working in men's health to move the topic up the national or European agenda.
Men’s Health Week has grown in size and impact in Europe, firmly establishing itself as a key part of the health improvement calendar in a rising number of countries. The week tends to take on a different theme each year but each country can use it in the way they think best. There's no limit other than your imagination to what you can do locally as some of the examples here show.
The week includes themes such as physical activity, cancer and sexual health. It aims to encourage national and international institutions and organisations to implement policies and interventions to improve male health and well-being within their area of activity. If you're interested in men's health, this is the one week in the year above all others that you'll want to get involved in. The 2010 Week is 14-20 June.
Activities and themes
EMHF member organisations decide on which activities and themes are most appropriate to their circumstances. Activities can include:
- health checks( eg. blood pressure and cholesterol) and health promotion activities in and outside of traditional primary care settings (cafes, bars, gyms, night clubs, workplaces, streets …)
- health fairs
- gym demonstrations
- seminars, conferences, talks, lectures and other educational events with key stakeholders
- policy debates
- parliamentary activities
- media events
- publication of reports
- celebrity-led awareness-raising events - perhaps linking up with local sports clubs or teams
- sponsored walks, fun runs, cycle rides or similar events
- competitions - football, fishing, static cycling, dancing, golf, badminton, rambling, orienteering, anything
- targeted events for fathers or migrant workers or workers in a particular industry etc.
In Europe, the week has focused on the following themes in the last five years or so:
- Men and sexual health
- Men and cancer
- Men and obesity
- Men and mental wellbeing
- Men and long term conditions
- Men and health in the workplace
- Men and access to primary care services
But there are many other subjects that could be covered and in many countries a generic week simply to promote the idea of 'men's health' is most appropriate. Discussions are taking place among EMHF members that aim to synchronise dates and themes for future men's health weeks across Europe.
Many countries already participate
Many countries have partipated over the years. The ones we know about include Austria, Denmark, Estonia, France, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Slovak Republic, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, the Netherlands, Portugal. Let us know if there are any more.
If you live in a country that isn't listed, why not organise an event and put your country on the European men's health map? If you live in a country that is already active, find out more about your local events and go along or work with others in your country to organise your own event.