MEN'S SHEDS: Members of the Gerringoing Men's Shed in NSW, which are one of 105 sheds to receive Federal Government funding in the May 2017 funding announcement.
MEN'S SHEDS: Members of the Gerringoing Men's Shed in NSW, which are one of 105 sheds to receive Federal Government funding in the May 2017 funding announcement.

Men's Sheds retooled after funding

MEN'S Sheds across Australia are to be the recipients of 123 Federal Government grants totally $400,000.

The grants, which were announced this week, will allow Men's Sheds to buy tools and equipment to support community projects and training, to maintain or develop their buildings, or create local activities to improve men's health.

The funding is part of the $5.1 million the Federal Government is providing to the Australian Men's Shed Association through to 2018-19.

The sheds have proven to be a successful mechanism in supporting the physical, mental health and wellbeing of men in the community.

They help men, particularly older men who may be socially isolated within their home, to connect with each other through working on worthwhile projects at their own pace and in their own time.

A tinker here and there, a shared cuppa, joining in a skills course such as healthy cooking for one, are all valuable interactions for Senior men.

AMSA national president Kevin Callinan OAM said, "the funding is critically important to help the shed members get on with what they have got to do".

"Some of them are in isolated areas with no support compared to the cities.

"The sheds will be able to use these funds to help kick start their programs.

"Each shed is able to decide what programs they can run," he added.

There are over 930 sheds across Australia. AMSA received from them funding applications worth $1.2m, but only had $400,000 available to hand out.  

Some of the projects being funded are equipment and software purchases, air conditioning installations, first aid training, solar panels, electronic equipment, kitchen equipment and inter-generational programs.

"The men's shed program is successful for men's health," Mr Callinan said. 

"It's not a service provider, but it has outcomes of getting men involved in helping with their mental health, suicide prevention and reducing social isolation."

For anyone needing men's health support, the AMSA website has over 50 types of support service links at www.mensshed.org


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