Article for Coochie Island News, October 2019
This month in the Men's Shed, we have taken on some new members (including some younger men). Membership growth is slow, but it is growing, for which we are grateful.
We have finally decided on a schedule for Shed usage, with the aim of accommodating the needs of all members. It has been decided that Monday, Wednesday and Friday are Project Days. These are days on which projects that have been sanctioned by the Project Manager can be undertaken. Tuesday and Thursday are designated as Social Days, where men gather and talk. Saturday is a day where anything can happen, depending on the needs of those who attend. The Shed is closed on Sundays.
Opening hours on the various days are generally 9am to 12 midday, although the members run on Coochie time, and the hours may not strictly be adhered to. Social Days are well-attended, but it's possible that the Shed may not open on Project Days unless members are engaged in a specific project.
It should be noted that, due to Workplace Health and Safety requirements, there needs to be a minimum of two members in attendance at any time, and one of those must have access to a working mobile phone.
It's interesting to see the impact of WH&S regulations on Shed activities. Our insurance requires that we adhere to the regulations closely, and this does place limits on what we do and how we do it. The regulations also impact the services that we can offer on the island and, while we are completely committed to supporting the people of Coochiemudlo, it's going to take some time for us to work out the best ways of doing so.
The rumored noise report has been completed, and the Committee is currently looking into how to proceed once the ramifications of the report are understood. It’s taking more time than expected, but we are determined to get the process right, and so we are taking the time it needs.
By the way, if you are a man on the island and feel isolated or alone, please remember it doesn’t need to be that way. Pop into the Shed on Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday morning to meet the men. The coffee is hot and the conversation is cool.