Men’s Shed hosts stu­dents for a morn­ing of wood­work

Alpine Observer - - News - [email protected]­me­ BY STRUAN JONES

STU­DENTS from Wandiligong Pri­mary School got a taste of wood­work at the Bright Men’s Shed on Tues­day morn­ing, swing­ing ham­mers and build­ing small box ‘in­sect ho­tels’.

Men’s Shed mem­bers Ron Ford, Tony Stra­chan, Mil­ton Miller, Kevin Han­cock, and Bill Con­nolly were on hand to guide the 15 stu­dents through dif­fer­ent parts of the shed, in­clud­ing see­ing a 3D printer in ac­tion and a large model elec­tric train set.

Ge­og­ra­phy and science teacher at Wandiligong Pri­mary School Alex Shaw said the stu­dents had been learn­ing about pol­li­na­tion and the roles bees play in the eco sys­tem, and how habi­tat loss was a con­stant con­cern.

The fin­ished ‘in­sect ho­tels’ could be set up in stu­dents’ back­yards, to hope­fully at­tract suit­able ten­ants.

“The Men’s Shed have been kind enough to host us,” Ms Shaw said.

“It’s a great op­por­tu­nity to show some kids an ac­tiv­ity that’s not just in the class­room.”

Men’s Shed Com­mit­tee mem­ber Ron Ford wel­comed the op­por­tu­nity to get young stu­dents into the shed.

A for­mer school teacher him­self, he said it was great to see pri­mary stu­dents en­joy­ing the process of build­ing with wood.

“We just want to get kids and en­cour­age them with wood­work and other things like that. Some of them are pretty adept at it al­ready. I think it’s good fun,” he said.

Next year Bright Men’s Shed will cel­e­brate 10 years since the lay­ing of the slab and the con­struc­tion of their build­ing.

A re­cent re­cruit­ment drive saw an­other 14 lo­cals join the or­gan­i­sa­tion, which has had its mem­ber­ship swell to over 80.

The shed now has its doors open six days a week, with some­one on duty and mem­bers free to come in to work on projects and use the wide range of tools avail­able.

“We’ve got so much, there’s nearly ev­ery­thing you’d want here,” Mr Ford said.

“We’ve got a forge, weld­ing, wood­turn­ing, wood­work, the com­puter nu­mer­i­cal con- trol (CNC) router. We’ve got so many tools - ev­ery sort of saw you’d want - the car hoist is an­other bonus, not many sheds have a car hoist - and the mem­ber­ship is re­ally great.”

A big fundrais­ing event for the Men’s Shed is the up­com­ing an­nual book sale on Fri­day, Jan­uary 4 and Satur­day, Jan­uary 5, at the Unit­ing Church in the cen­tre of Bright.

Money raised by the book sale and other fundrais­ing ini­tia­tives go to­wards keep­ing the lights on and the doors open, but the Shed has also re­ceived grants from the Alpine Shire Coun­cil and the Bright Bendigo Bank.

The Bright Men’s shed is lo­cated at 14 Churchill Av­enue and can be con­tacted on 5750 1120.

PHOTO: Struan Jones

WORK­ING AT IT: Wandiligong Pri­mary stu­dents Skye Snow­don, Zeke Py­well and Zeke Timbs get­ting stuck into wood­work at Bright Men’s Shed.

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