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Awareness months happen more and more over time. April in the UK is host to 6 of them alone, so im asking with too many to mention are they overhyped now or do they still remain a vital part of a charity?
April Is (from a quick glance in my calendar) Bowel Cancer Awareness month, Stress Awareness month and Mathematics Awareness month. Each cause worthy of a mention, but what does an awareness month do?
According to Wikipedia, Awareness months are, “recurrent months that are used by various governments, groups and organizations to raise awareness of an issue, commemorate a group or event, or celebrate something.” It seems that every month in the calendar has five or more concurrent events. Many with their own coloured ribbon or specific attire/regulations for fundraisers.
But are they overhyped? Are there too many that we are expected to remember, or is each one worthy of our time?
Let’s take Bowel Cancer for example.
Cancer Research UK say that 41,265 cases were diagnosed in 2014, with 15,903 deaths, and a 57% survival rate. That is a huge amount of people suffering, so April was made Bowel Cancer awareness month.
It is the second biggest cancer killer in the UK. However it is very treatable AND curable if diagnosed early. This year they are using the month to focus on screening.
It is also Stress Awareness month. Stress Awarness month has been held every year since 1992. During this month health care professionals like to increase public knowledge about both the cures and the causes of our stressful modern lives.
So do they do any actual good and do they still remain vital?
In my option, yes. With the rise in social media hooking into the awareness months, I personally think that they are doing a good thing. Providing they are able to be relevant to an audience, have a strong media relationship and social media at the centre of things.
Celebrity endorsements often help a cause, because they know they have a certain power.
Having a set month in the calendar does mean that, like birthdays and anniversaries, caides will be remembered.
Knowledge is key to any charity or event, whether that is word of mouth, social media or simply hand delivered flyers.
In conclusion, I think that although there may be many, pick a few that are close to your heart, and support them. Simply liking them all can easily lead to charity exhaustion, and the will to spread knowledge can be thin.
What do you think? Please leave your comments below, I’d love to know what you think.