A total of $16.7 million over four years was invested in male health programs that were designed to support the National Male Health Policy (the Policy) and build on efforts to address the priority areas identified in the Policy.

Page last updated: 30 May 2013

Men's Sheds

Men’s Sheds have long been recognised as meeting places where men can find social support and camaraderie. During the consultations for the National Male Health Policy there was considerable support expressed for men’s sheds for their demonstrated success in reaching marginalised and isolated males and in contributing to improvements in male health and wellbeing.

General Support

The Australian Government supports the Australian Men’s Shed Association (AMSA) to support all Sheds in Australia. By building its administration support team, AMSA is able to increase its support to Men’s Sheds and provide:
  • Professional advice and assistance about how to promote self sustainability, how to establish a Shed, and information about occupational health and safety and risk management in the Shed environment.
  • Help with sourcing donations of money, buildings, equipment or land, as well as help with building approvals.

Financial Assistance

Australian Government Shed Development Program

AMSA is funded to administer the Australian Government Shed Development Program to provide direct financial assistance to Men’s Sheds. Two funding rounds are scheduled in each of the 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 financial years, with $250,000 allocated each year.

All Men’s Sheds in Australia can apply for funding across three funding categories. Currently these categories are:

1. Tools and Equipment;
2. Building Maintenance and Development; and
3. Shed Activities and Programs.

The funding available directly to Men’s sheds includes provisions for Men’s Sheds to apply for items such as:
  • tools and equipment;
  • purpose built workspaces;
  • improvements to Sheds;
  • costs associated with promotional and fundraising activities or items that will help sheds remain viable or increase their capacity over the longer term;
  • costs associated with provision of training, seminars or undertaking major community projects; and
  • costs incurred to undertake activities that promote or support the health and wellbeing of members.
The priority for supporting Sheds is given to Sheds in areas of need and that meet certain criteria such as high unemployment. Precedence is also placed on establishing sheds for priority groups such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander males; males in rural and remote areas; migrant males; and males who are socially disadvantaged.

Each funding round will also have a priority theme category that Sheds from all areas can apply for, provided that they meet the criteria (eg. Round 2 placed a high priority on Sheds located in areas significantly affected by natural disaster and Round 3 focuses on Shed sustainability).

Funding is not available for purchasing or maintaining buildings or land.

A set of criteria for the Australian Government Shed Development Program has been developed based on these priority areas or groups and to put in place a fair process for allocation of this assistance.

Application documents are posted on the Australian Men’s Shed Association website when a funding round is open. Please note that Australian Government Shed Development Program Guidelines can change for each funding round. Interested parties wishing to apply for funding should visit the Australian Men’s Shed Association website for updates before submitting an application.

Men’s Shed Organisations in Australia

There are two peak organisations that represent Men’s Sheds in Australia:

Australian Men’s Shed Association

Website: Australian Men’s Shed Association website
Contact Number: 1300 550 009

Mensheds Australia

Website: Mensheds Australia website
Contact Number: (02) 9890 8351

DIY Health Toolbox

The DIY Health Toolbox is a health promotion initiative under the National Male Health Policy that is directed at Australian males of all ages to build on the valuable roles that men play in Australian society and encourages them to put more importance on looking after their health.

The DIY Health Toolbox has been developed in consultation with Minister Snowdon's Male Health Reference Group, the Australian Men's Shed Association and Mensheds Australia to ensure the items and health promotion messages contained in the toolbox are appropriate and useful in the shed environment. The DIY Health Toolbox is a real toolbox that contains useable items such as tape measures, carpenter’s pencils, magnetic clips and note books featuring positive health messages and referral pathways.

Initially the Toolboxes were developed for Men's Sheds, however other community organisations that provide male health services or support may find them useful for initiating conversations about male health and raising awareness of male health issues in the community.

To receive a free DIY Health Toolbox, follow the link below to complete the order form and submit to National Mailing and Marketing.

Please note that there is a limit of one free DIY Health Toolbox per organisation.

DIY Health Toolbox order form