WHO ARE WE?
The Okanagan Men’s Sheds Association was registered as a non-profit society in British Columbia in 2013 to develop a Men’s Sheds program in the Okanagan area.
Our mandate is based on:
To engage men of all ages; increase well being of members by fostering social connections, increasing self esteem through participation in meaningful community projects or personal tasks, sharing skills and interests
An inclusive group which reflects the ideas and goals of the participating men (members)
We place high value on Respect, Integrity, Safety, and Best Practices.
To improve health, well being, wellness, quality of life for men who may be ‘beyond meaningful work’. Provide an alternative for health services to better meet the needs of the members through improved access and communication. Ensure sustainability through innovation, efficiency, teamwork, service to other community partners.
To be effective in helping men combat isolation share skills and feel valued as demonstrated by participation, communication, camaraderie.
Following Winnipeg, the Okanagan Men’s Sheds Association is one of the first sheds to be established in Canada, modeled on the large and growing movement in Australia, Ireland, Great Britain and New Zealand expanding through other parts of Europe. A significant number of other Sheds are now established or developing in BC and across Canada.
Our approach has been:
- to see if there is a need
- to see if there is a local interest
- to see if there is support
The New Horizons for Seniors program supported a Kelowna based pilot shed project in 2014-2015.
The pilot results;
- confirmed the concept is valid in this area
- increased the participation of men in the area
- confirmed the needs, benefits and interest
- helped to establish the standards and develop the resources
- helped to expand awareness and interest through demonstration
We are now confident of the needs and potential benefits to the community and the interest to support the program.
The essential next step is to establish this ‘SHOW ME’ place.
Updated 2019 – 2020: This place is now established and developing at the new location at Helen’s Acres with support from the Trinity Foundation as our ‘landlord’.
A New Horizons for Seniors grant in 2018 supported development of the Outreach program to demonstrate the Men’s Shed idea to other parts of the Okanagan. This program linked with a research project by UBC Okanagan and became a joint project for 2018 and 2019.
WHAT DO WE DO?
We are a group of men who get together in a safe and friendly environment to socialize and to engage in common interests.
We work on community projects and other activities that are determined by the interests of the men in the group. Some examples of possible activities are: woodworking, gardening, cooking, bike repair, golfing, and so on.
New members are always welcome. The shed is open to men of all ages, backgrounds and abilities.
HOW DO WE BENEFIT?
We believe that men can live longer, healthier and happier lives in the Okanagan by:
- enjoying the comraderie of other men with similar interests
- applying our combined knowledge, experience and skills
- sharing stories
- mentoring others
- finding new opportunities and interests
- stimulating imaginations, new challenges
- rejuvenating spirits and
- having fun