ARNPRIOR – The Arnprior-McNab-Braeside Men’s Shed marked their first anniversary with an open house event to showcase their projects and the positive impact the program has had on local senior men’s lives.
“Men’s sheds are actually all about helping men and building healthy communities,” Greater Arnprior Seniors Council chair and a founding member of the local Men’s Shed Darrel O’Shaughnessy said. “We have created opportunities to mentor others and problem solve, all working together, shoulder-to-shoulder with respect and dignity for each other. But most importantly, we feel useful and have purpose, and we just feel really good about ourselves. The end result is that we are determined to give much more than we receive.”
The Men’s Shed first opened its doors in February, 2019 as a program of the Arnprior McNab/Braeside Seniors Active Living Centre. It was created as a place to connect senior men to their community through social interaction and woodworking projects.
“I’m pleased to congratulate the Arnprior and McNab-Braeside Men’s Shed on their first anniversary” Minister of Long-Term Care and Kanata-Carleton MPP Dr. Merrilee Fullerton said. “The Men’s Shed is doing incredible work addressing the social isolation experienced by many senior men by helping them to remain productive, healthy, active and engaged in their community. I look forward to the continued positive impacts of this initiative in the lives of our senior men and their families.”
One year later, the Men’s Shed has 30 members and a growing list of community projects.
The woodworking project have evolved throughout the first year of operations. To date, the Men’s Shed community projects have included:
- 34 accessible picnic tables
- eight Little Lending Libraries
- eight planter boxes for The Grove and Town of Arnprior
- 50 bird houses
- 30 bat houses
- 20 bird feeders
- two puddle rinks for Arnprior
- one recycle storage building for The Grove
“The Seniors Active Living Centre (SALC) committee is a group of citizens who care greatly about the health and well-being of our senior folks,” McNab-Braeside Mayor Tom Peckett said. “The Men’s Shed came about through discussions at our committee meeting driven by Darrel O’Shaughnessy, who along with help from others, including Jean Guy Asselin the owner of the property where the Shed is located, brought this senior activity to life. Those involved enjoy companionship and conversation, coming together to build many projects that are needed throughout the area.”
The Men’s Shed is made possible through a partnership between Arnprior Regional Health, the Town of Arnprior, the Township of McNab-Braeside and the Ontario Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility.