Funding seeks to get men involved in community

NEWSTEAD Men's Shed will build a proper workshop and increase its member numbers thanks to a grant. 

Program coordinator Barry Lacey said the group was hosted out of a disused fire station and would use a $60,000 grant to construct a new shed.  

"We will be able to have more members because we are very limited with what we have got," he said.

"We will have a proper workshop, because we have got quite a bit of equipment.

"It means we will be able to then renovate the front of the fire station and have it as a meeting room." 

The grant was funded through the state government's Strengthening Men’s Sheds initiative.  

Mr Lacey said the program was about getting men of all ages together to talk about their problems.  

Other central Victorian groups to receive grants included the Maiden Gully Marong Lions Club, the Bendigo and District Aboriginal Cooperative Ltd, Quambatook Men's Shed and the Murrabit Men's Shed Inc. 

The sheds are one of 41 across the state that have received funding to be put towards building a new shed or converting an existing building over the next 18 months. 

Community services minister Mary Wooldridge said the program was an important to help build strong communities. 

"(The program) provides men with opportunities to develop and use new skills, establish social networks and give back to the local community," she said. 

"These grants will help more men to get involved in their local communities and they will also give more communities access to better facilities in their local area." 

Victorian Men’s Shed Association President Paul Sladdin said the funding would increase the number of programs across the state. 

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