Mane-taining mighty minds

Most men get their hair cut a few times a year, with some going as often as once every couple of weeks. Imagine if men paid the same attention to their mental health.

That was the motivation behind not-for-profit organisation Might and Mane.

Every day Australia loses nine people to suicide, and seven of those will be men. More than 70 per cent of men with a mental disorder do not access services available to them.

Might and Mane is an organisation wanting to educate barbers through a three-hour training session, teaching them skills on safe conversation, how to recognise the signs of mental illness and how to encourage men to access services that can help. Their catchcry is: “We want blokes checking up on their mental health as often as they get their hair cut.”

Founders Gabrielle Timmins and Charlie Newton, who between them lost a father and friend to suicide, discovered men were less likely to speak up about their mental health. They found that men are more likely to open up during “side-to-side” non-confrontational activity, like driving, golf and in the barbers chair.

Gabrielle and Charlie won a business mentorship and started an ING Dreamstarter Fundraiser which raised nearly $30,000. Now Might and Mane are in the midst of commencing their first training session, starting off with ten barbers.

Hatch‘s Montana Duncan spoke with founder Gabrielle Timmins about Might and Mane. Listen to the full interview below: