Watershed day for Eltham Men's Shed

Published on 12 April 2018

Eltham Mens Shed.jpg

The Eltham Men’s Shed has moved into its new home at Wattletree Road, Eltham North.

Mayor Peter Clarke officially handed over the keys to the premises at the site of the vacant preschool today.

The 55-member Men’s Shed outgrew its previous location at St Vincent's Care Facility in Eltham.

And already there are big plans for the new large Council-owned site, which Eltham Men’s Shed secretary Harry Morris described as “a dream come true.”

Mr Morris said they were fund-raising to build a $250,000 workshop on the grounds. They expect to start building in September and have it ready by the end of the first quarter next year.

“Once it is built, we will use the preschool building as meeting and social rooms. This is a wonderful new home for our members,” Mr Morris said. He said Council was replacing the children’s toilets with adult ones.

Mr Morris said the Men’s Shed not only provided companionship for older men ranging in age from mid-60s to 90, but also benefited the wider community. He said members had been mentoring VCAL students at Eltham High School to build chook houses for the grounds of Eltham Primary School.

Members were also making sugar glider nesting boxes for an environmental research program.

“Over the last four years members have also restored 100 bikes which have been donated to needy families and children,” Mr Morris said.

Cr Clarke said he was delighted Council could help out such a worthy group. “Men often bond when they work shoulder to shoulder, as opposed to face to face. The shed is vital for men’s well-being and mental health,” Cr Clarke said.

Councillor John Dumaresq, whose Edendale Ward includes Eltham North, said the Men’s Shed gave purpose and structure to the lives of many of its members. “They’re busy and have an instant circle of like-minded friends,” Cr Dumaresq said.

Swipers Gully Ward Councillor Bruce Ranken said the Men’s Shed members completed many community projects which otherwise may not have been done.

“A great effort by a great group of people,” Cr Ranken said. “Council is delighted to support them.”

Image: Eltham Men's Shed Secretary, Harry Morris; Nillumbik Shire Council Mayor Peter Clarke and Eltham Men's Shed President James Gundrum.