Movember is a charity raising money to fund projects that support men’s mental and physical health. More specifically they work with initiatives supporting prostate and testicular cancer, men’s mental health, and suicide prevention. Since 2003, the charity has funded more than 1,250 men’s health projects around the world and ultimately raises awareness for issues that often go under the radar. Many people know the charity for its movement ‘Grow a Mo, Save a Bro’, this involves men growing a moustache throughout the month of November to raise money and start conversations around men’s health. More recently, the charity has promoted fundraisers that include physical challenges
Here's a quick Q&A with Joe about his Trainline Challenge, which will see him run and cycle and total distance of 260 miles in just two days...
What does Movember mean to you?
It’s helped me when I’ve been struggling. The message that they carry and the projects that they support have filled me with courage when things have been hard. I’m not only someone that supports them but they support me. What’s more, the people they have helped over the years and knowing that what I’m doing can help others is huge for me.
Why such a big challenge?
So many more men have suffered with their mental health with all of the lockdowns we’ve been through recently. Both myself and friends have suffered, and there’s been many local stories of men unfortunately committing suicide since the pandemic began. I want to show anybody who is struggling that they can get through the tough times.
How did you come up with the challenge?
The journey along the trainline to London from where I live is significant for me in that, over the summer, I made journeys to London to attend fitness events which helped my personal development and aided in improving my own mental health. The 30 mile run represents the 30 men that commit suicide everyday. I always like to ensure I include statistics in my challenges, and I'm doing it twice over because I just wanted it to be harder.
What are you looking forward to most about the challenge?
I’m looking forward to cycling and running with like-minded people that also have a huge passion for the cause. I’m fortunate that friends and family in my immediate circle also want to be a part of this.
What, if anything, scares you about the challenge?
Nothing. I know, mentally, that I can get through this even if I have to walk. I’m more excited than scared to see how far I can push my mind and body.
What is your biggest motivator?
Knowing how many people I might be able to help. Already I've had people - friends, clients, gym members - start conversations about their own mental health with me because they know that I’m such a huge advocate for it. This is a huge motivator, knowing that I’m helping people talk about their struggles as well as fundraising for Movember.
To donate please go to: https://movember.com/m/joestokes97?mc=1