ONE of the biggest benefits of Men’s Sheds is that they save lives, according to David Mudge, the Men’s Shed West Gippsland Facilitator.
“We’ve even pulled people out of depression just by giving them a voice and listening.”
He spoke about the importance of these groups in rural communities last Thursday at the annual Men’s Sheds Cluster Muster.
This year, the small but fast-growing town of Lang Lang played host to the event.
Focusing on road safety, it attracted an estimated 80 members from Men’s Sheds across Gippsland and surrounds.
Retirees travelling around Australia, commonly known as ‘Grey Nomads’, make up a significant amount of crashes in tourism areas.
So whether you drive a motorhome, truck or tow a caravan – there was something for everyone.
The day even included a presentation from Leah Bellairs from the South Gippsland Learner Driver Program, as many of these Men’s Shed members have children or grandchildren learning how to drive.
The annual event wrapped up with a practical truck, trailer and caravan information session outside to teach drivers about weights, coupling and capacity.
“For a lot of these Men’s Sheds, they’re great opportunities for men to just absolutely pour their hearts out to someone else,” David said.
“We find a lot of them also gain new skills after they join. You can teach someone what you know or learn off someone else.
These groups offer supportive spaces for men.
“We’re also going to check out the Lang Lang Men’s Shed later, which is great for all of us to get some ideas to take back to our sheds,” David said on Thursday morning.
“Often you hear of the groups doing woodwork, but some do other activities like photography.”
He said events such as the Cluster Muster are great networking opportunities for men.
“It’s good to get up in front of this group of guys and talk,” he said last Thursday.
“And this event’s great because they don’t all stay in their own little group – they reach out and talk to anyone and everyone.”
Men’s Sheds ‘save lives’