A seven per cent cut to funding to the Irish Men’s Sheds Association will severely hamper the organisation’s ability to support men in Meath, according to Deputy Shane Cassells.
Deputy Cassells was commenting after a parliamentary reply showed that a cut of €18,700 to the organisation has been ordered following a decision of the Government cut grant funding.
“This will have an impact on the ability of the national association to support local men’s sheds clubs here in Meath,” remarked Deputy Cassells.
The Meath Men’s Shed movement is going from strength to strength with six dynamic Sheds operating in Athboy, Navan, Broomfield, Dunshaughlin, Moynalty and Summerhill.
The Sheds provide a welcoming meeting place where once a week men can come together to undertake meaningful hands on projects, have a chat, drink tea and generally enjoy the camaraderie and banter.
“Men’s Sheds play a really important role in reaching out to men who might not normally come into contact with services that offer services in public and mental health support,” remarked Deputy Cassells.
“Enhanced funding had been secured for 2017 but the cut to its 2018 budget is really damaging as it scuppers the ability of the organisation to plan for expansion. Anything we can do to reach this highly vulnerable group of people that all too often are do not discuss challenges they face must not be limited by funding cuts. “It’s disappointing that cuts made by Fine Gael in government are seeing reductions which will inhibit the ability of great organisations such as the Men’s Sheds Association.”
Deputy Cassells stressed that the cuts must be reversed if the issue of isolation amongst the most vulnerable in our society is to be dealt with properly.