Movember’s ‘Unmute – Ask Him’ Campaign

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. It’s the elephant in the room for many of us, but the reality is, if you haven’t been directly impacted by a friend or loved one taking their life, you know someone who has.

The World Health Organization estimates that more than 800,000 people – or, even more harrowingly, one person every 40 seconds – die by suicide each year. More than 2,500 Australians take their lives each year, and, according to research, some 65,000 attempt suicide. Hundreds of thousands contemplate it.

Earlier this week, the Movember Foundation launched a month-long advertising campaign aimed at combating male suicide. Entitled Unmute — Ask Him, the three-part series is a canny play on the YouTube sub-genre from which many have made a living: the how-to video. The series features three sub-titled videos of different men offering tips on quintessential blokey things: fishing, barbequing and fixing a flat tyre.

The idea is to start the videos with the sound muted until the viewer is directed to un-mute, which will reveal that the man is, in fact, opening up about his mental health struggles.

The campaign aims to encourage blokes to open up, and for family members to really listen to what the men in their life are saying – and whether they are hiding their true feelings. Events such as RU OK? Day have helped raise awareness around asking people how they are doing, but many of us are not actually listening.

Movember aims to reduce male suicide by 25 per cent by 2030.

You can help this along by doing two simple things: Asking and Listening.


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