Executive Committee 2018
Ordinary Committee Members:
Robert Houston (Assistant Secretary)
Ken Howe (Assistant Treasurer)
Robert Houston / Dave Churchyard - Office Admin
Tom Skinner / Barry Guest - Woodwork Shop
Peter Jackson / Dave Harnett - Metalwork Engineering
Bob Neuhaus / Glen Cox - Paint Shop
John Gregory / Ray Meyer - Computer / Webmaster
A letter to Mens Sheds
by Bettina Arndt2nd April 2018
A letter to Mens Sheds
by Bettina Arndt
Hi Everybody, I have been given your details by some of the other Men’s Sheds people, who have suggested you might be interested in a YouTube video I posted last week. For those of you who don’t know me, I have been writing about men’s issues for many years and spoke at a Men’s Shed conference a few years ago. See more information on my website: http://www.bettinaarndt.com.au/
I was astonished to hear that some Men’s Sheds are coming under pressure to include women. So I went out and interviewed men in various sheds about all this. The result was pretty interesting. Here’s my video: (see below).
I published a little piece in The Australian summarising some of what I found. See below. If you are interested in the video it would be great to have your comments on my YouTube page, below the video. I’d most appreciate it if you could circulate it to your Shed people. You may be interested in some of the other men’s issues I have discussed in recent videos. https://www.youtube.com/user/bettinaarndtaus/videos. I am now working full time to try to shift the public agenda so that we pay more attention to what is happening to boys and men. I do hope you will support me by liking my videos and spreading the word about what I am doing.
All the best, Tina (Bettina Arndt)
Women in Men’s Sheds.
Women are everywhere now. We've forced our way into all the workplaces, into the army’s fighting forces, into all men’s organisations, into the pubs. Everywhere you look there are women.
But there was one place that men were safe and that was in men's sheds. Traditionally in Australia many men had sheds up in their backyard where they could retreat to do their own thing. It led to a Men's Shed movement across Australia – over 1000 sheds now, particularly attracting older, retired men who come together and support each other. A vital mental health measure given that these older men are the group most at risk of suicide in the country.
But guess what? Women are pushing our way into the sheds too. There are sheds across the country coming under pressure to allow women members and amazingly some have caved in. I recently spent a few days talking to men in sheds for a YouTube video, finding out what’s going on here.
It turns out women are being allowed in the door due to a bunch of virtue-signalling men who willingly sell out other males in order to win brownie points from the ladies. They don’t believe in what men’s sheds are supposed to be all about – that special male companionship that comes from men doing things together, working on projects and enjoying banter and secret men’s talk. They don’t believe men are more likely to share their problems when with other men who get where they are coming from, who know what it’s like to face a broken marriage or prostate cancer.
There’s a good bloke up at Kur-ring-gai called Kevin Callinan who is chairman of the peak body representing men’s sheds, The Australian Men’s Sheds Association. He worked for seven years to set up his local shed but Kevin comes from a background in equity in the workplace. He believes in “inclusiveness” and hence calls his thriving shed simply “The Shed” and women are welcome.
Kevin is a man who doesn’t believe there's anything special about male culture. “There is to a certain extent but it’s not the be all and end all. I would more prefer a broader mix of society.” When asked whether it changes male culture to include women he said. “It does change male culture - for the good.”
Yet you hear something very different if you talk to most blokes in the Men’s Sheds movement.
“What do you think of women in men’s sheds?” I asked a man from the Kincumber Shed, on the NSW Central Coast. “Ugly!” was his response.
“If women ever came into this shed I would be out the door,” said another.
Many believe the men allowing women into their sheds for cosy “inclusive” little craft sessions are selling out other men – and they are part of a far bigger problem.
There are many men in leadership positions see it in their interests to brown-nose to the ladies rather than stick up for men. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull lies about women’s role in family violence blaming the whole problem on men. Men running corporations, our bureaucracies are falling over themselves to institute policies favouring women. Our laws are tilted to favour women victims. The men running our universities promote a fake rape crisis and ignore the increasingly failure rates for male students. And so it goes on.
Men involved in the Men’s Shed movement need to take action to protect these male sanctuaries that enrich the spirit and even save the lives of some men. Come on men – grow a pair and stand up for men!
Shed Update22nd January 2018
Time to catch some "Shedders" in the act. Thanks for permission to display these.
2017 Christmas Party Video12th December 2017
2017 Christmas Party Video
Went upmarket this year and shot some video and portraits (thanks to Les Grant) and made this short 7 minute tribute to the members who attended.
It's a little 'tongue in cheek' with Santa popping up all over the place.
Anyway, it's more for the records, so enjoy...
Shed Update7th December 2017
A walk around the Shed today highlighted some updates recently completed.
A lot of 'jobs' get done by shedders as part of the ongoing committment to improve the Shed for all Members, including painting, building, wiring, cleaning, ordering, pickups and deliveries, removals and production of goods for customers.
Today I photographed several new areas like the painted Containers, the enclosed metal working area, the continuation of the Mezzanine build etc.
Garage Sale and Open Day9th September 2017
Garage Sale and Open Day
On Saturday 9th Sept. The Men's Shed held it's first garage sale in the new shed, and was well attended by shed members.
Some money exchanged hands, but the sale forced the setup of a permanent display area and storage for finished goods.
Well done fellas.
Shedders get a Paint BoothSeptember 2017
Shedders get a Paint Booth
A successful Auction saw the Men's Shed acquire a 2nd hand Paint Booth, complete with lighting and extraction filters.
It came in way under budget as well.