Men need Mental Health Support, Now Mo than Ever

Posted by Aneesa Guerra-Khan on November 18, 2020

A look back at charity partner Movember Canada raising awareness for men’s mental health issues, and how their winning Digital for Good Tech Jam team tackled that challenge.

November rings in another season of Movember, a familiar charity partner of ours from Capital One’s Digital for Good Tech Jam in 2018!

Since 2016, the Digital for Good Tech Jam has had a simple purpose at its core: to help the community by using digital for good and help bridge the tech gap faced by local charities. The event brings together coders, developers, designers, coaches, mentors and many more smart people, and we pair them up with charities. Everyone works together over an intense weekend to solve a problem and have an amazing time. The challenges are positive, and the end result is reusable, open-source code that can be used by anyone. The 2020 Digital for Good Tech Jam concluded this past weekend, and we’re proud to keep this annual tradition alive with a virtual hackathon!

Movember joined the hackathon looking for new ideas on how to raise awareness for men's health issues such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and suicide.

The Movember Foundation came to the Tech Jam with three major areas they were hoping to improve: year-round fundraising initiatives, raising awareness for Movember’s existing impact from fundraising and donors, and maintaining engagement with website visitors.

Four teams took on the challenge designing various tech solutions including a web app that raises awareness of Movember charity by promoting transparency and news research projects, a blockchain loyalty model to bring new value to Movember participants and a new Movember website. Ultimately, it was team Mo Coins who designed the winning solution that went on to be reviewed for implementation by the global board of the Movember Foundation.

Team Mo Coins set themselves the goal to create a solution that incentivizes, educates, and rewards members and sponsors while also engaging and expanding the Mo' community not just during November but throughout the year.

With that goal in mind, the team created a loyalty-currency called “Mo’ Coins” that website visitors could earn through using a Chrome extension that showed users facts about men’s mental health, and the movement’s goals. Inspired by the Honey extension, the idea was to prompt an online shopper to top off their order to the nearest dollar ($99.90 becomes $100), and the difference can either be donated to the foundation or converted into Mo’ Coins! Mo' Coins would be used to redeem for Mo swag as well as other redemption opportunities in the future.

Fast forward two years and the need for accessible mental health resources and suicide prevention has only increased due to challenges men and women are facing living through this global pandemic. To support Movember, check out their guide to fundraising to find out ways you can help while staying safe and maintaining a social distance. If you or someone you know is in need of help, Movember Canada provides the extensive resources provided to help.

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