Croydon’s Men’s Shed is providing a safe space for people to come together and take care of their mental health while learning new skills, such as gardening, food growing and woodwork.

Men’s Shed is a community project based at Good Food Matters in Mickleham Way, New Addington. The Shed is an opportunity for (mainly) men aged over 18 to join weekly activities and eat together every Friday from 11am to 3pm.

Croydon Council is highlighting the project during this Mental Health Awareness Week to encourage more local men to take part. Men’s Sheds offer activities that are similar to what people might usually do in their garden shed, but with the additional aims for groups of men to be part of a community, feel a sense of fulfilment and achievement and enjoy time together to benefit their health and wellbeing.

Ben Elliot Sur, support worker at Croydon’s Men’s Shed, said: “Following the pandemic we found people do not feel the same as before and may not be in the same rhythm of life.

“Our Men’s Shed in Good Food Matters provides the community with a space to work things out, gain skills and be active. Some use us as a recommendation for employment, and retired people often welcome the opportunity to get back into a routine.

“This is a win-win situation for those that come and join us.” Croydon’s Men’s Shed community project is intergenerational, and women can take part, too.

Croydon Council, working with the NHS, received funding for this project to support people’s mental health following the pandemic.