Research shows that the pressure on men to follow outdated stereotypes of masculinity is contributing to their anxiety, depression, risky drinking and violence against women.
In response to this and in partnership with Mornington Peninsula Shire, Family Life will deliver the ‘Men and Boys Making It Happen’ project which aims to engage and empower men and boys across the Peninsula to help raise awareness of how rigid gender roles hold men back from living healthy, happy lives.
Family Life CEO, Allison Wainwright, said:
“Family Life is proud to be involved in the ‘Men and Boys Making it Happen Project’ supported by $120,000 VicHealth funding over two years, to advance gender equality and improve the health and wellbeing of men, boys and broader community by addressing outdated masculine stereotypes.
“To help achieve this, we will work with Mornington Peninsula Shire and Jesuit Social Services to deliver a series of training and education opportunities for Peninsula men and boys who wish to become allies, mobilising them to support others within the local community to challenge unhealthy gender stereotypes and break the stigma around men’s mental health.”
Training will be based on the Jesuit Social Services ‘The Man Box’ study, which reveals young Australian men freed from outdated gender stereotypes enjoy better physical and mental health.
Mornington Peninsula Shire Mayor Councillor Sam Hearn said:
“According to research, 54% of young Australian men feel they are under pressure to solve their own personal problems without asking for help.
“We also know that 19.8% of the Mornington Peninsula male adult population have been diagnosed with anxiety or depression with men having often suffering from a high level of psychological stress.
“We need to normalise men’s mental health conversations and create a culture that tells men it’s ok to share your struggles and healthy to talk about your emotions.”
VicHealth CEO Dr Sandro Demaio said it is important young men believe they can be themselves:
“If we want boys and young men to live happy, healthy lives and be caring and respectful in their relationships with women they need role models that show them being a good man is the same as being a good person.”
For more information about the project contact Jodie Belyea, Family Life Community Change Manager: firstname.lastname@example.org or find out more on Gender Equality on the Mornington Peninsula Shire website.
About: Family Life has been working with vulnerable children, families and communities since 1970. At the core of our organisation is our vision to build capable communities, strong families and thriving children.
We take an all of family, all of community approach to build resiliency and healthy relationships and are committed to improving responses to child vulnerability and family violence by achieving better outcomes for victim-survivors and communities.
Family Life recognises the importance of ensuring that voices of children are heard and their best interests are always served. This is driven by an evidence-based response to the needs of traumatised children and their families.