“Shedders” – as they are known, are usually men who like to get together socially, work on practical projects or get more involved in the community. By working ‘shoulder to shoulder’ we aim to reduce social isolation and promote active and healthy lifestyles in later life.
Men’s Sheds are like a larger version of the typical man’s garden shed. They are well-equipped with workbenches and a range of machine and hand tools. Using their skills and knowledge, members work individually, or together on practical projects that benefit the local community. And for those who are happy to socialise, it’s a place to sit and relax, enjoy a chat over a cup of tea, or perhaps play a game.
Our Shed is a safe, friendly, and inclusive environment to share old skills and learn new ones; talk about the issues and experiences that affect our lives; and build new social networks and friendships. It’s been shown that having a sense of purpose and avoiding social isolation has a positive effect on health and well-being in later life.
Sheds are intentionally informal in approach and welcome men (and women to certain sessions) from all walks of life – whether from manual or knowledge working backgrounds – including those who can be the hardest to reach.
Men’s Sheds started twenty years ago in Australia and now number over 1000. In the UK, we now have several hundred with new ones opening all the time. Men’s Shed is a movement, Join the shed and be part of an international support network.
Our supportive shed environment aims to help the community avoid isolation and loneliness by giving members a sense of purpose, offering active roles working towards helping the shed grow. Away from the practical workshops we have projects lined up to help members set up computers, learn the skills to use them then help arrange a fun trip out for a group of members.
Through these social activities members find friends. We are run by volunteers and can provide people with new skills in Carpentry, up-cycling and painting techniques. We work with other local community groups to provide ‘Shedders’ an outdoor space at a community allotment plot. We aim to organise fun trips for our members and run local craft stalls at community events.