It was Mens Health Week last week which focused on the importance of mens physical and mental health as they are equally important and just as important as female health. I’ve connected with a few mens mental health charities and projects and came across Men Tell Health.
I asked Gary Pollard, who runs the project a few questions. He gave a lot of detailed answers so I’ve had to split the interview into three parts – here’s the first – a little introduction to Men Tell Health.
Could you tell us about Men Tell Health?
Men Tell Health is my own little passion project. It’s a resource for men that positions itself to offer both overt and covert help and support. Men Tell Health might be devoted to men and mental health, but it’s not an exclusive club by any means.
Mental illness doesn’t discriminate against gender, so neither do we. Whilst it’s not a gender-specific condition, how men seek, access and engage with mental health services is different compared to women, so we aim to tackle that now and in the future.
We like to think we look at mental illness differently than most other sites.
How the site looks is different from most and how it talks about it is very different.
The site is founded on 6 principles; positivity, honesty, humour, strength in numbers, being user-led and recovery. Those key messages are at the heart of everything we do.
We use humour to de-stigmatise the condition and to remember that, despite any diagnosis you may have, you’re still a human being above all else.
We also focus on recovery and getting better, even if it’s only a tiny, minuscule step forward, it’s still a step forward.
We also believe in strength in numbers.
We’re not arrogant enough to think all the answers anyone needs are on our site, so we will happily point you to someone who is better suited to help. We don’t look at the site as an encampment, nor are we focussed on keeping people attached to us exclusively because we don’t want them donating money to another site.
It’s about getting people help and getting them better, however and whoever is best suited to provide that. The website has over 300 pages of content on the site, all geared to those values.
Being user-led, the community we’re building is really what is going to make Men Tell Health into ‘something’.
It might be me steering the ship right now, but I’m only one member of the crew and I want to get it to a place where it steers itself and grows organically with the help of the incredible people who have been powering it since we started in November 2015.
It’s been quite a ride already!
Stay tuned for the second and third instalments of this interview which will be coming up in the next two weeks!