Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Cobram Men's Shed hits Canberra

MP keen to highlight health benefits of shed campaign as Cobram men enjoy Parliament House barbecue.

LAURA HURLEY July 4, 2014 3:36am

Parliament's first indoor barbecue: Dr Sharman Stone with the Cobram Men's Shed chapter in Canberra. Source: Office of Hon Dr Sharman Stone MP

Representatives from the Cobram Men’s Shed participated in ‘‘the first indoor barbecue parliament has ever seen.’’

The Men’s Shed Blokes’ Barbecue was held at Parliament House on Tuesday, June 25, also attended by former Victorian premier and current beyondblue chairman Jeff Kennett, and Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone.

It was moved inside because of Canberra’s notoriously bad weather.

‘‘The Australian Men’s Shed Association is a great initiative (that keeps) men meeting together and active,’’ Dr Stone said.

‘‘A Men’s Shed is modelled on a man’s shed in his own backyard.

‘‘If you visit one of our local Men’s Sheds you will see people working on restoring bicycles for a local school, making toys for pre-schools, fixing up garden equipment or building furniture to auction off for charity.’’

Victorian Men’s Shed Association vice president and Cobram chapter president Rob Butler was present at the barbecue on Tuesday.

‘‘We left at four o’clock in the morning and arrived back at nine,’’ Mr Butler said, describing the trip to Canberra.

‘‘It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

‘‘We had access to a lot of restricted areas of parliament, including watching question time from the press gallery.

‘‘We enjoyed seeing the inner workings of politics.’’

The barbecue was funded by the Australian Men’s Shed Association, and the Cobram and Euroa chapters were sponsored by Dr Stone.

‘‘Local Men’s Sheds play an important role in maintaining friendships, reducing isolation, keeping up skills and adding great community volunteer value,’’ Dr Stone said.

‘‘The Men’s Shed gives men opportunities to sit down and talk to their mates.

‘‘Some may be reluctant to talk about health issues or other personal matters, but the sheds help to break down barriers.’’

If you would like to find the closest Men’s Shed or learn more about the initiative, visit the website at

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