It has been said that a shed is to a man what a handbag is to a woman.
Local Shedders Barney and Rodney McKeown are pictured donating an old bicycle which they had repaired to Gareth Baggley from St Vincent de Paul Society in Downpatrick. The bicycle was one of several recently donated to the “Shedders” by Elvis Kirk Contracts of Killyleagh.
Barney and Rodney regularly attend the Men’s Shed at Ballydugan Road, Downpatrick, (hence the nickname “Shedders”) and were delighted that a young child would be able to make good use of the bicycle.
Men’s Sheds bring together men aged over 60 to share their skills, have a laugh and a cup of tea, while working on practical activities of their choice. Described as a place for men to be themselves, to work at their own pace, to exchange ideas and learn, members support each other and form friendships. There are a range of activities for the over 60’s at the Men’s Shed. Membership is free and anyone interested in finding out more should contact Hazel Wilson on 07885 407094.
The Men’s Shed project is coordinated by local charity Action Mental Health (AMH), who also run the Garden Centre in Ballyduggan Industrial Estate. AMH has provided life-changing services across Northern Ireland since 1963.
The organisation was awarded a grant from the Big Lottery Fund’s Reaching Out: Connecting Older People programme and have used it to establish Men’s Sheds projects in Downpatrick, Antrim and Enniskillen.
Joanne McDowell, the Big Lottery Fund’s NI Director said: “We are already seeing the really positive impact that our Reaching Out Connecting Older People programme is having on the lives of our most isolated older people in Northern Ireland.
“The programme is supporting a range of vital projects that are transforming the lives of older people in our communities who are at risk of isolation, depression, mental and physical ill health or low self esteem.”