Event helps men
Working with dads over the last two years has highlighted the needs of many men in the community, says Kids Need Dads (KND) ambassador Shayne Jeffares.
In conjunction with International Men's Day (November 19), KND Hawke's Bay is planning two events for organisations and the wider community.
“In the last six months we have noticed an increase in enquiries from men or their families seeking more information and calling for support than ever before. The pressure that many of our men are facing, especially with the current economic conditions, is of real concern to me.”
Shayne says the focus of the morning event will be to encourage those attending to consider the needs of men accessing health services and looking to collaborate more around men's wellbeing.
“As we know, men's partners and families also feel the economic and social impacts of men's ill health.”
The event is open to all social service providers and anyone wanting to see better outcomes for men's wellbeing. Shayne believes Hawke's Bay is small enough so they can care a lot better for each other. The event will be a casual conversation with guest speakers Malcolm Byford, Kurt Fenton and Joe Whare, talking around the topic Happy healthy Hawke's Bay men, how is it looking out there?
“As men, we hear and see the messages, Men need to Talk, and with recent headlines showing the sad reality within our own communities, we need to ask if this message working.”
Shayne says KND, originally a ‘go-to' for dads needing help during a relationship breakdown, fills a gap in Hawke's Bay for many men. Their reach has now extended to parenting and antenatal support to new dads, which Shayne is keen to see increase.
Some of the support men are after might come through The Blokes Book ,a project Shayne has been working on in collaboration with Canterbury Men's Centre, which will be introduced at the event.
It's a one-stop resource booklet for men of all ages with a range of help services and contacts including tips for coping with anxiety, mental health, addiction and parenting support. The book will be distributed in the community, clubs and workplaces early next year, and is getting support from community services, Shayne says.
“While focusing on men's wellbeing, it will also provide information on starting a conversation with someone they care or are concerned about — listening is a good place to start.”
■ IMD/KND men’s event, Monday, November 19, 10am-11am.
Barbecue from 6.30pm with guest speaker Phillip Sheehan who opted out to lead an alternative, less stressful life.
Free for everyone, St Andrew’s Hall, 208 Market Street, Hastings. More information phone Shayne 021 813 877
Kids Need Dads manager Shayne Jeffares, with Damian Corbett, and his daughter Athena Corbett.