A dedicated space for men to socialise and pursue practical interests is due to open up in Meanwood, Spring 2021.
Meanwood Men Shed will be based quite literally in a shed – a mammoth 30 x 12ft cabin – situated at Meanwood Valley Urban Farm. It is being set up by local charity, InterACT Church and Community Partnership, as a response to increasing concerns of isolation, loneliness and poor mental health amongst men.
“Local people were telling us they wanted to see more activities specifically aimed at men and which reflected the different ways that many men prefer to socialise. We’re so pleased to partner with our friends at Meanwood Farm on this project. Together we are determined to get the Shed set up so that activities can start happening as soon as it’s safe to do so. As the community begins its recovery out of the pandemic, spaces such as this will be more important than ever.
We don’t yet know what will happen at the Shed – that’ll be for those men who become part of it to decide. But we will be there to give support and guidance where it’s needed.”
InterACT’s Project Manager, Vanessa Brown
The initial stages of Meanwood Men Shed have been funded by the local Housing Advisory Panel and The National Lottery Community Fund.
The UK Men’s Sheds Association, the support body for Men’s Sheds across the UK, argues that Men’s Sheds are a vital community asset:
“Sheds are about meeting like-minded people and having someone to share your worries with. They are about having fun, sharing skills and knowledge and gaining a renewed sense of purpose and belonging. As a by-product of all of that they reduce isolation and feelings of loneliness, they allow men to deal with mental health challenges more easily and remain independent, they rebuild communities and in many cases, they save men’s lives.”
A group of volunteers has levelled the ground and is beginning to build the structures of the shed itself. Once people are able to gather again safely Meanwood Men Shed will begin in earnest with an open invite for local men to get involved.
Anyone who would like to register their interest would be very welcome to do so by contacting Vanessa Brown.