How being a Polished Man in 2017 can help save a child's life

Asking blokes to paint one fingernail blue for the month of October is more than just a fancy pamper statement. By doing so you're helping raise awareness for Polished Man.

The month-long campaign started by YGAP four years ago kicks off on October 1 and raises funds for children who have experienced physical or sexual violence before they turn 18.

Last year Thor actor Chris Hemsworth and his brother Luke also joined the cause, alongside other global names like surfer Kelly Slater and actor Zac Efron who turned to social media with a painted nail to spread the good word.

Protecting the future

This year ambassador and comedian Tommy Little returns to the spotlight (he's been a Polished Man since inception) and says it's about helping kids who are our future leaders.

"Four years ago Polished Man had no billboards and there was little known about what the campaign was about," says Tommy Little.

"Now it's a movement that's gaining momentum with the key to raise money if we are to make change that's effective," he says.

Other ambassadors for 2017 include Olympic swimmer Michael Klim and musician Vance Joy.

A chilling statistic

One child dies every five minutes as a result of violence. It's an alarming statistic that captures a gloomy global picture. In Australia, that translates to one in 28 children two years ago. Now the number is one in 26 experiencing physical or sexual abuse.


According to YGAP CEO Elliot Costello, the statistic is getting worse and it's due to a spike in cases being reported.

"The figures in Australia are alarming – it's like one child per classroom is experiencing violence," says Elliot Costello.

"If you're an Indigenous child you're seven times more like to be abused."

Last year 62,000 people signed up as Polished Men and this year YGAP hopes to encourage more people to get involved in the campaign. You can do so by registering online.

Burgers for days

Polished Man's partner Grill'd is giving away seven burgers in seven days (valid between Wednesday 4th October and Tuesday 10th October) to all the polished men and women who sign up and raise $30 for the initiative.

Elliot says that the aim of Polished Man is to encourage men from all walks of life to discuss the very real issue of violence against children. He says statistically men are 90 per cent more likely to be the perpetrator.

"The issue of this sort of child abuse has been silent for such a long time in our community," says Costello.

"It's thanks to women like Rose Batty after the loss of her son Luke, who put this very real issue on the national agenda.

"That teamed with the findings of the Royal Commission into child abuse means more people are talking about it," says Costello.

Be a better man

He says the initiative is about reframing the conversation of masculinity. "There are a lot of positive aspects of masculinity," says Elliot.

"We want men to be good role models, good leaders and for men to be protectors of children," he says.

"This enables us to say not all men commit violence and that is a clear message within this campaign, but all men have a role when addressing it and making change."

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