Publication Details

A. Waling & D. L. Fildes, "‘Don't fix what ain't broke’: evaluating the effectiveness of a Men's Shed in inner-regional Australia", Health and Social Care in the Community 25 2 (2017) 758-768.


Men's Sheds and similar community programmes are known to encourage help-seeking behaviour and thus improve the health and well-being outcomes for the men who attend. This paper investigates this issue through a community needs assessment of a Men's Shed programme in inner-regional Australia. The immediate purpose of this research was to help direct future funding initiatives, and provide recommendations for potential changes and improvements to the programme. A community-level needs assessment is a systematic process used to determine and address gaps or needs between current and desired conditions within a particular community. We sought to explore how particular formats and structures of Men's Sheds programmes contribute to improve social and medical well-being, and whether there are key programme characteristics that could be emulated. In total, 22 surveys and 20 interviews were conducted with the men who participated in the programme. The report finds 95% of men are satisfied with the current running of the programme. While there were areas that have been identified for improvement, most men reported that they are content with the current format and would not like to see major changes to its implementation. The results of this research confirm the known benefits of these types of programmes. This paper provides other community programmes with some insight into the key success factors for running a Men's Shed.



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