Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Minister Mark Furner chats with members of the Cherbourg Men’s Shed at Wednesday’s official opening (Photo: Facebook)

September 13, 2017

Queensland’s first accredited Aboriginal Men’s Shed was officially opened in Cherbourg on Wednesday by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Minister Mark Furner.

The Cherbourg Men’s Shed has been set up in an old besser block building at the former Emu Farm, and achieved full registration with Men’s Shed Australia on August 1.

Mr Furner said mental health was often not discussed in Indigenous communities, and local men in Cherbourg will benefit from better mental health outcomes because of the new facility.

“It’s great to see the new Men’s Shed in Cherbourg will provide a safe place for local men to come together, talk to each other and get the support they need,” Mr Furner said.

“Mental health and getting help have often been overlooked within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, especially within the male population.

“The new Men’s Shed is changing that, developed and led by the community with activities for local men including health programs and practical support.”

Mr Furner said the Men’s Shed was the result of work by community members Wayne Farrell and Norman Hegarty, and he commended them for their efforts.

“I also thank Cherbourg Aboriginal Shire Council for their incredible support, providing the building, machinery and tools for the initiative, and other organisations and community members involved,” he said.

“Having these facilities for local men is so important, helping to relieve the pressures of everyday life and prevent more serious problems with physical and mental health down the track.

“What makes me immensely proud is that this Men’s Shed is the first to be registered by an Aboriginal community in Queensland and provides a fantastic example for others to follow.”

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