Men’s Health Information and Resource Centre

A Checklist For Organisations Working With Men

ucb 1 Andrew King, Steve Sweeney and Ross Fletcher developed this checklist as a way to provide organisations with a methodology to tailor their services to better meet the needs of men.

"The 'non-deficit' approach views involvement of men in a way that expects and encourages positive results..." 

The stereoptypical view that men are not interested in engaging with health services is on its way out. What is being recognised now is that there is an inherent balance between encouraging men to become more aware and more proactive in using available services, and encouraging services to tailor their operations to become more male-friendly.

The 'non-deficit' approach views involvement of men in a way that expects and encourages positive results. This builds on the positive attributes that men bring to their interaction with family and services.

Major Principles Of The Non-Deficit Approach In Services

This approach operates across four major areas:

  • Environment - creating an atmosphere that clearly indicates that males are welcomed and their presence is expected. Examples include having male staff, visuals of men and boys in a positive display, operating hours that account for men's work and family routines and access to parking and transport routes.
  • Language - influences the way that the service's views on men are communicated. Often men are aggregated into negative categories such as 'men are abusive', 'disinterested in their family and children' or 'aggressive and 'lack emotion'. Getting past these negative views can produce much better engagement from men.
  • Initial Contact and Marketing - this aspect takes into account how men are reached and persuaded to make use of the service and is another area where taking a positive vierwpoint pays off. 'Marketing' includes every aspect of the service and how it relates to men from design of the services  through to how it is promoted and communicated to men.
  • Service Provision - this influences how men interact with the service including their level of input, processes around feedback and complaints/compliments, and how the service strcutures itself to deal with crises and stress in its clients.


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