On Sunday September 24th 2017, tens of thousands of distinguished gentlefolk in hundreds of cities worldwide donned their cravats, tweaked their moustaches, pressed their tweed and sat astride their classic and vintage styled motorcycles to raise funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and men’s mental health. In Kuwait, we did it a day before.
Around 20 dapper riders set off in Kuwait. Gathering at Green island at around 6am, they headed for the Kuwait Towers. After that to His Essentials barber shop, where they were treated to free trims. Then on to their destination of Urban Café at Mayar Complex.
There’s still time to donate to rider Moe Ebrahim (above, on the left) – collecting for the Movember Foundation. Read on to learn why you really should. And find out how you can donate right here.
The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride was founded in Sydney, Australia by Mark Hawwa. It was inspired by a photo of Mad Men’s Don Draper astride a classic bike and wearing his finest suit. Mark decided a themed ride would be a great way to combat the often-negative stereotype of men on motorcycles, whilst connecting niche motorcycle communities together.
That first ride in 2012 brought together over 2,500 riders across 64 cities. The success of the event encouraged the founder to consider how it could be used to support a worthy cause.
• In 2013, over 11,000 participants in 145 cities around the world raised over $277k (USD) for prostate cancer research.
• In 2014, over 20,000 participants in 257 cities in 58 countries raised over $1.5M (USD) for prostate cancer research.
• In 2015, over 37,000 participants in 410 cities in 79 countries raised over $2.3M (USD) for prostate cancer research.
• In 2016, over 56,000 participants in 505 cities in 90 countries raised over $3.6M (USD) for prostate cancer research and men’s mental health programs in partnership with the Movember Foundation.
Influenced by the tragedy of losing one of their ride hosts to depression, from 2016 it has seen a change in its health fundraising goals. Now, the funding of men’s mental health programs is a Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride focus, in addition to prostate cancer research through their new official charity partner The Movember Foundation and the support of title sponsors Triumph Motorcycles and Zenith Watches.
The focus is on gentlemen who have been dealt a tough hand in life. In particular, it’s raising funds for research into prostate cancer and mental health programs as part of a mission to support men’s health globally. These funds are invested by their partners the Movember Foundation, the world’s largest men’s health organisation.
What every man needs to know
Prostate cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer in men. The Movember Foundation is the largest funder of prostate cancer programs in the world.
What is prostate cancer? The prostate is a gland located immediately below the bladder, in front of the bowels. It produces fluid that protects and enriches sperm. Prostate cancer occurs when some of the cells in the prostate reproduce far more rapidly than normal, resulting in a tumour. If left untreated, prostate cancer cells may eventually spread from the prostate and invade distant parts of the body, particularly the lymph nodes and bones, producing secondary tumours in a process known as metastasis.
One of the most worrying aspects of the disease is that most prostate cancers develop without men experiencing any symptoms in the early stages.
Mental health – 3 out of 4 suicides are men
510,000 men die from suicide globally each year. That’s one every minute. This has to change.
The causes of suicide are complex. There’s no single reason why men take their own lives, but we do know that by improving overall mental health we can reduce the risk of suicide. We need to address untreated mental health conditions among men.
Too many men are toughing it out and struggling alone. There’s no shame in checking in your own mental wellbeing, and those close to around you. Our friends over at Movember have produced some handy guides, that might help take the sting out of broaching the subject.
For more information on prostate cancer and mental health, visit the ‘your health’ section on Movember.com