Pictured: Mr Joyce visiting Scone Men’s Shed earlier to announce the new funding.
The Australian Government is continuing to support men’s health and wellbeing in the Upper Hunter through grants under the 20th funding round of the National Shed Development Program.
Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, welcomed the decision by the Australian Government to award Scone Men’s Shed with funding of $7155 for shed improvements involving earthworks, concrete and electrical work.
Meanwhile, Merriwa Men’s Shed has been awarded a further $1300 for a new water urn and electrical installations.
“Now more than ever, Sheds offer men a critical avenue for social support and engagement, especially in drought affected areas like the Upper Hunter,” Mr Joyce said.
“To stay healthy, we need to do regular activities with the people around us, and our local men’s sheds have become focal points in our towns and villages across the region.
“I congratulate Scone and Merriwa men’s sheds on their grants and know the projects will leave a lasting legacy on the health and wellbeing of its members in their respective communities.”
Minister for Health, Greg Hunt, said that belonging to a social group was vitally important for emotional and mental health.
“The Government remains committed to supporting men’s sheds and encouraging men to meet up and get involved with meaningful community projects,” Minister Hunt said.
Regional Health Minister, Mark Coulton, said Men’s Sheds are particularly important for regional, rural, and remote communities across the country.
“In many parts of the bush, local Men’s Sheds are fast becoming one of the most important organisations, one where members make connections and serve their community.”
More than 6,000 men across Australia are expected to benefit from the programme, with 121 men’s sheds receiving funding under this round.
Recent men’s sheds grants in the Upper Hunter include Murrurundi Men's Shed which was recently awarded $7000 for shed improvements including a new concrete slab and a further $3500 for test and tag training and equipment.
The men’s shed grants provide funding for health improvement activities, the purchase of tools and equipment, community projects and training and for building maintenance and development.
The Federal Government recently introduced a new law that will make donations to men’s and women’s sheds tax deductable.
What this means is that as of 1 July 2020, anyone who donates $2 or more to a shed can claim an income tax deduction for that donation.