Community Matters: Grumpy Old Men

15 Oct 2018 speech

This month I was delighted to visit the Grumpy Old Men, a Men's Shed group based at the Edwardstown Baptist Church in my electorate of Boothby. The Grumpy Old Men get together each week to help our local community. Whether it's by removing weeds, pruning branches, mending gates or painting fences, they help those who need a hand. When they're not out and about, the Grumpy Old Men can be found next to their shed splitting firewood to raise money to donate to local charities or making wooden writing boards and toys.

They donate these items to the Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child project, and to date they've made over 4,600 boards. The Grumpy Old Men were recently awarded $2½ thousand in federal funding, under the National Shed Development Program, to support their work.

We know Men's Sheds help improve mental health by providing companionship and purpose, particularly for our senior Australians who have retired from the workforce or may have been widowed. The Grumpy Old Men at the Edwardstown Baptist Church are a wonderful example of how Men's Sheds support their members and our local community. Thank you to President Neil Berry and all of the Grumpy Old Men for their hospitality and for my honorary Grumpy T-shirt, and special thanks to Bernice and Heather for the lovely morning tea. I need to let my community in on a little secret: despite their 'Grumpy Old Men' name, I have never met a more friendly, kind and welcoming group of blokes. Thank you, Grumpies, for all that you do.