Liz Jelley works in the mining industry and she knows better than anyone that men make up the majority of the mining workforce. Liz Jelley also knows that simple conversations can change behaviour and that out of family tragedy something innovative, practical and powerful can happened.
Liz’s father Lance lost his fight with Prostate cancer in May this year. Before her father Lance died, he teamed up with a group of men to come up with a slogan that might encourage other men to get to the Doctors and have a check up long before he did.
Lance came up with the slogan “Be a man and Get a check up”. Now his daughter has worked to get this message out there and in a practical and effective way this message will start to make a difference in several work sites across Queensland as it appears on the ever present high vis work wear. A new range of visibility work shirts will carry the slogan “be a man and get a check up” and will soon be released by Barcoo Workwear and the Prostate Awareness Research Foundation across mining sites in Queensland.
Liz and Lance’s idea is a great way of getting the message out there in a simple and clear way. Great that it was designed and developed by a man who knew the issue so intimately but sad that this process came from a man who did not/would not go to the Doctors because he was “well” and perhaps left his visit too late. What an enormous act of courage and generosity from Lance who knew his fight was over but wanted to make a difference. What a brave and generous act of courage from a daughter who will always grieve for the loss of her dad but has used this loss and his own words to make a difference to other men.
Finally, on a subject that affects all of us FIFO, Non FIFO, men, women and children I share a blog about one man’s journey with prostate cancer. This man was 49 when diagnosed. At 52 he has turned to writing as his innovative approach to a life threatening illness that the medical profession have now said they can no longer help him with. For his own sake and for the sake of helping others this courageous man, much like Lance, is giving back the best way he knows how. He is sharing his heart, his experience and his pain and his realisations in the hope that his words help at least one other person.
What is your innovative approach to an issue you or your family have experienced? Do you have any ideas that could be used to get a conversation going in an innovative way? What message do you want to send out into the world and why?