Men’s Sheds are a great part of our community and provide support for thousands of Brisbane men each year, writes Lord Mayor Graham Quirk.
This great concept is the modern-day version of the backyard “man cave”, where men of all ages can forge friendships, learn practical manual skills and tackle construction projects.
In 2008, Brisbane City Council provided funding to help kick-start the very first Men’s Shed in Queensland and since then, 30 sheds have started across Brisbane and many more elsewhere in the State. Each year since, Council has provided funding to Men’s Sheds to help them build sheds and buy equipment and materials. Over nine years, Council has supported 45 groups with half a million dollars!
Recently I announced that Council would again support our Men’s Sheds this year. Nine groups are receiving financial support from Council this year, sharing in a total of $80,000. Men’s Sheds in Annerley, Nundah, Carina, Greenslopes, Sandgate, Stafford, Wilston, Mount Gravatt and Oxley will all receive funding as part of Council’s grant program this year. The funds provided in these grants will go towards upgrading and expanding the workshops in these men’s sheds, kick-starting new projects and purchasing equipment and materials for participants to undertake new activities. Some of these Men’s Sheds are just starting out and Council’s funding will help them build their shed and workshop areas.
I’m proud to offer this support to Brisbane Men’s Sheds, which provide a safe, supportive and friendly environment for men of all ages and from all cultural and economic backgrounds to gather, volunteer, work, and chat with like-minded people.
We know that often the communities in our Men’s Sheds provide vital support to members and help shoulder those who are doing it tough.
It is also through these networks that men can learn new skills such as woodworking, bicycle maintenance and furniture repair, while at the same time being a part of a community that offers strong social support.
Many of these groups build and create toys or help with community projects – in fact, it was some of our Men’s Sheds that helped build the BRISBANE sign that was on show at South Bank.