Sunday January 21, 2018
The 'Men's Shed' movement helps older men stave off loneliness
more stories from this episode
- Novelist explores what happens when family members join ISIS
- The 'Men's Shed' movement helps older men stave off loneliness
- Pressure mounts to correct the injustice done to the late Supreme Court Justice Gerald Le Dain
- Why the end of net neutrality threatens democracy itself
- Life after gangs: hope, resilience and redemption
- The joys of building a backyard ice rink
- Guest host Gillian Findlay
- Full Episode
The first men's shed opened twenty years ago in a borrowed room in the farming town of Tongala, Australia.
It was an experiment — an attempt at dealing with a growing health crisis. Older men, prone to isolation, despair and depression, have a very high suicide rate.
Today, there are more than 2,000 Men's Sheds across Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and Great Britain. Seventeen in five Canadian provinces.
In Men's Sheds, there are no rule-books, no funny uniforms, and no expectations. Just a bunch of guys in a bit of the same boat.
Producer David Gutnick was recently in Winnipeg where he visited the Woodhaven Men's Shed.
It could hardly be more simple. Every Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon, a couple of dozen older guys make their way to a room in a Winnipeg community centre.
There are folding chairs and tables. A coffee pot, playing cards, a couple of cribbage boards, bundles of dried willow branches and cottonwood bark, a box full of carving knives and paint brushes.
A bowl of water gets put on the floor for Comet the dog, and a hand-painted sign is taped up on the door for newcomers: Men's Sheds of Manitoba.
Click 'listen' above to hear David Gutnick's documentary, "I'm Nobody, My Phone Doesn't Ring."