Scottish Conservative candidate for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch Jamie Halcro Johnston has recognised the importance of the Men’s Shed Movement’s efforts as the organisation releases a manifesto of proposals ahead of the election.
Men’s sheds are based in communities and provide a place for men to meet, to take on practical projects and also to collaborate and work together. The organisation also has a particular focus on building happier, healthier and more connected lives among their members.
Mr Halcro Johnston has previously welcomed the role of men’s sheds in the Scottish Parliament as an MSP.
Jamie Halcro Johnston said: “The men’s sheds operating in communities across the Highlands and Islands are a fantastic and vital resource.
"The network of over 190 men’s sheds open and developing across Scotland have been a practical way to build skills, to talk and to combat the isolation that too many in our communities can experience.
“Research has shown that men’s mental health is often underrepresented and it is clear that for many, finding practical ways to pursue hobbies and interests can be difficult. There are still barriers to talking about mental health issues and promoting positive attitudes to mental health – so I am pleased that the shedding movement has made this a core part of their aims.
“The work done by the men’s shed charity is an excellent example of practical work that can be achieved locally. I support their goals to expand their network and particularly to engage with veterans and others who have traditionally been difficult to reach.
"However, I know that some sheds have found it difficult to find suitable long-term facilities to use. I hope those looking at setting up new groups will have the support of the local council and local communities in getting off the ground.
"The men's shed movement, and its remarkable growth, is playing a vital role in combating isolation and supporting good mental health. We should be doing all we can to ensure it continues to go from strength to strength."