“The Bendigo Aboriginal Men’s Shed Members would like to acknowledge the Dja Dja Wurrung traditional owners of the country on which they meet, and pay their respects to the Elders, both past and present.”
The Bendigo Aboriginal Men’s Shed (BAMS) is an enterprise undertaken by the Bendigo District Aboriginal Co-operative (BDAC) to provide a place for Indigenous men to meet, talk and enjoy activities together as a group. Its aim is to promote health and wellbeing to the members through friendship and common interests.
BDAC chief executive officer Raylene Harradine, Chairperson Barry Fary, Board Members and staff saw a need for a Men’s Shed and set about planning the project. The idea had been in the development stages for many years. This initiative was due to the local men identifying a need for such a space and the concept of the shed is modeled on existing Men’s Sheds, but with a cultural focus applied to its values and activities.
The BAMS Shed aims to provide a place where men can contribute to their community and connect with other men, helping maintain good mental wellbeing and life skills.
BDAC staff also realised the growing need for a men’s shed because local Indigenous women often came together and talked, however the men did not have a tendency to simply meet and chat that readily. It was evident this could lead to missed opportunities for the men to gain support from others in a friendly social setting.
BAMS is a where men have a safe environment, where they have that opportunity where they can also open up to each other for advice and support.
The Bendigo Aboriginal Men’s Shed, located at the BDAC site on Prouses Road, complements the medical and community services already available on site, and provides a blanketed service for the men.
The shed provides a meeting place where men can come together and seek support from friends if they are having a bad day. Even if men don’t wish to take part in any activities, it is a place where they can simply come have a cuppa and a yarn or two and just hang out with great company…
The Bendigo Aboriginal Men’s Shed members would like to thank Camilo Demarco for his efforts in the early development and continued support of our Men’s Shed program.
Thanks to all of the Bendigo Aboriginal Men’s Shed members for their friendship, sharing of knowledge and ongoing support.
We appreciate the contribution made by the following Bendigo Aboriginal Men’s Shed members – Burt Julburi for the use of his wonderful artwork, and Thomas Johnstone for sharing his recipes.