What is a Men’s Shed?
‘Men’s Shed’ is a term now being recognized internationally for a special kind of Men’s Activity Centre.
Men’s sheds started in Australia about 1996 with a goal of improving the health of the older male population. Today, there are over 1,000 sheds in Australia and approximately 1,500 worldwide. Benefits are apparent for the men involved, for their families and for their communities. Improvements are being seen in a healthier senior population, reduced dependencies on many social and health services.
The Community Men’s Shed is a modern, shared space version of the workshop in the basement, garage or back yard that has long been a part of the Canadian way of life, with a focus on retired or less active men.
The purpose is to offer men an alternative way to reach out, avoid ‘isolation’, find new opportunities and interests, to socialize and work along with other men on activities which give a sense of purpose and value.
A Men’s Shed is a welcoming and friendly meeting place for men to come together to socialize, to participate in activities and thereby to improve their life style and well-being. The form of each shed varies based on the interests of the men in the group and the availability of facilities.
- Optional activities, determined by the members
- Reviving interests and developing new skills through sharing and mentoring
- Offering camaraderie, new friends
Men’s sheds are open to men of all ages, backgrounds and abilities.
Above all, Men’s Sheds are what we make them. Sheds are:
- A gathering place for men of purpose. And others.
- Usually involving a work space. For those who don’t have one or have had to give theirs up.
- Productive. Maybe.
- A place to change the world. Definitely.
- A helping hand. You bet.
Sheds are not:
- A formal training program. But you may gain some knowledge and skills.
- A sports club. But you may play sports.
- A health program. But your health and well-being may improve.
- An information service. But you may ask questions.
- A service for men. But you might be of service to others or get advice and support from time to time.
Sheds aim to be:
- Independent. We welcome help from others as long as there are no strings attached.
- A benefit to the community. We will give more than we get.
- Inclusive. All are welcome.
Qualifications needed: Respect.
A video link: How and why Sheds started and grew