Shedders back on the tools

By Charlotte Wooldridge | posted on June 6, 2020

ALBANY Men’s Shed is back in business after a two-month hiatus, with local shedders ready to get their hands busy again.

The community shed was forced to close in early April due to COVID-19 restrictions, however was able to reopen last Tuesday while following new guidelines.

Albany Men’s Shed President Gary Duncan said while the time apart was tough, shedders were ecstatic to be back in their community and working on projects.

“It’s been fantastic,” he said.

“It’s good for a lot of the men, because they’ve been isolated away in lockdown and they’re just glad to come back and talk and do a bit of playing around in the shed again.”

While the shed is limited to allowing a maximum of 20 people in the shed at one time, the new approach has not hampered their experience.

“It’s very similar to everywhere else in town, we’ve got lots of crosses on the floors, we’ve got to keep social distancing, we’ve got the area for them to have their coffees with all the chairs 1.5m apart,” Mr Duncan said.

“It’s those sorts of things.

“We’ve followed all the COVID-19 requirements and it’s worked exceptionally well, so it’s been great in that way.”

With a lot of stories about their time away, shedders can now share them while working on new projects to help the community.

“We’re making a couple of picnic tables for clients so we’ve got those on the go, and we’ve got a couple of park benches that we’re making for a couple of clients also, and we’ve got a number of littler projects than those going on so it’s all go again,” Mr Duncan said.

He said that times like these have reminded the community what role the
shed holds for so many men across Albany.

“The Men’s Shed is a very important thing for the community in the way that it gives men somewhere to go and talk,” Mr Duncan said.

“It also gives their partners or family members a break.

“They come down and it’s a respite or time out for Mum who’s been with them for a while too, they still feel needed by doing projects and it’s something they can get their hands into.

“We’ve got guys who have been desk jockeys all their life and have never thought that they could do some of the things we’ve taught them to do.

“That side of it is very good.”