PRESENTATION: Cr Neil Meiklejohn, chief mechanic Bob Webster, Mayor Tracy Dobie, Heath Hunt and Cr Yve Stocks with the Men's Shed's new lawnmower and power lift.
PRESENTATION: Cr Neil Meiklejohn, chief mechanic Bob Webster, Mayor Tracy Dobie, Heath Hunt and Cr Yve Stocks with the Men's Shed's new lawnmower and power lift. Chris Lines

Men's Shed gets help to beat the black dog

THE mental health support that Warwick Men's Shed offers to struggling men in the community has been recognised by Southern Downs Regional Council in the form of a grant.

The money was used to buy a new lawnmower and power lift for the group, which will make life easier for the older members.

"Now we won't have to lie down when we try to fix up motorbikes, so the older guys will be able to get more involved,” the shed's chief mechanic Bob Webster said.

The Warwick group's secretary Ian Stevens said getting involved was what the Men's Shed was all about.

"Whether they are coming down to help fix some stuff or they just want to sit and have a chin-wag, our primary focus is on the mental health of the guys,” Mr Stevens said.

"There is no fear of talking about anything, the guys feel comfortable and will talk shoulder-to-shoulder with each other about stuff they would not mention otherwise.”

Mr Stevens said that during his eight years as secretary for the group he had seen many guys come through in bad shape who are most often made to get involved by their wife or friends.

"A lot of the fellas who come in are being chased by the black dog of depression,” he said. "Once they get here and start finding their place they love it.

"Some of them live and breathe the shed. I have pulled up at 7am and there have been guys sleeping in their car waiting for it to open.”

Presenting the grant was Southern Downs Mayor Tracy Dobie, who said the Men's Shed makes a great contribution to the community, particularly through their work with retired men.

"I was down at the Pig and Calf Sale and when I mentioned I was coming here a lady told me the Men's Shed saved her brother-in-law's life,” Cr Dobie said.

"Grants like these will help them buy the equipment they need and continue to do their great work independently.”



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