Men in Sheds

What is Men in Sheds?

Our Men in Sheds project is a dedicated, friendly, and welcoming meeting place where local men experiencing loneliness and isolation come together to share skills, build self-esteem, and forge friendships.

It’s a space in which we:

  • Tackle feelings of isolation
  • Improve confidence and self-worth
  • Encourage positive lifestyle changes
  • Develop community initiatives

We all need a sense of purpose and structure in our lives, and feedback has shown just how important Men in Sheds are to people living in and around Edinburgh.

Developing communities

We chose to run our Men in Sheds project in Craigmillar because we wanted to create an initiative that helped men in one of Scotland’s most deprived communities.

It is well-known that men in this area struggle with their sense of identity due to poor employment prospects, with many also experiencing mental and emotional distress. It’s a terrible statistic, but life expectancy in and around Craigmillar and Niddrie is amongst the shortest in the country.

Supporting employment

Since our community project started, over 40% of men who regularly attend our shed have found permanent employment. All have built new friendships and feel less isolated.

Embracing mental health

Activities include talking, gardening, woodwork, and foraging for materials. We don’t judge or shy away from difficult conversations, and we understand that as well as everyone having physical health, we all have mental health too.

Here’s what some of our attendees told us:

“Sitting playing dominos is a great ice-breaker. It helps people talk about how they feel and how they’re doing in the moment.”

“Coming to the shed a couple of times a week gives me something to look forward to and a reason to get out of the house.”