Blayney Men's Shed members are checking if they're OK?

WALKING IT OFF: Daryl Hildebrandt, Paul Mulholland and Ian Tooke taking to the streets of Blayney in October last year.
WALKING IT OFF: Daryl Hildebrandt, Paul Mulholland and Ian Tooke taking to the streets of Blayney in October last year.

Lockdown is tough for everyone and our community groups have been significantly impacted by stay at home rules.

One group in particular that is seeing its members sorely impacted by the current lockdown is the Blayney Men's Shed.

With RUOK? Day drawing attention to that simple question, the importance of men's sheds and the role that they play in their member's mental health, has never been stronger.

"The men are coping, barely," said the shed's president Ian Tooke. "They really miss getting together and working side-by-side."

As a way of keeping in contact Mr Tooke sends out a weekly text message to all the members to check on their wellbeing.

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"This way we can see how they're going, check on their responses," he said.

Although the majority of the 28 members have a partner at home, there are four that don't, but Mr Tooke said that all the members miss that valuable interaction between each other.

"The motto of the Men's Shed is 'Shoulder to Shoulder'," he said.

"Guys will work side-by-side, chat and gasbag with each other while they're working on their projects, ask how their medications are going, how are they settling in with their appointments."

Apart from the shed itself, members would often take to the streets every Sunday morning followed by a barbecue breakfast back at the shed. Those days have also gone.

"We can all go for a walk whenever we want, just not together and there's no barbecue at the end of it," he said.