Volunteer some of your time, join a social club or sporting organisation
and belong to something meaningful in your community.
THE SIX B'S
Aimed at creating an opportunity to reconnect with family and friends along with taking the focus off work, a gathering of around 70 West Australian farmers, some who travelled up to 700kms to be there, is helping rural and regional Aussie men talk with their mates about what's going on in their lives.
R U OK? DAY
RUOK? Day is this Thursday and the 2021 theme is 'Are They Really OK? Ask Them Today'. Our BBQ in Ulverstone, a collaboration between MCT, Mr Perfect and Central Coast Council aims to promote this message and remind everyone that everyday is a chance to have an RUOK? conversation with someone in your life.
CARERS WEEK GRANTS
Communities Tasmania are on the lookout for projects or events to support which 'Celebrate and promote the contribution of carers to their communities'. Carers Small Grants Program aims to improve recognition of carers during National Carers Week and increase awareness of services and supports.
Men's Resources Tasmania will host a vigil on the lawns of Parliament House in Hobart tonight calling on the Tasmanian Government to "support the development of male-friendly services, a male suicide prevention strategy, and the provision of resources and events that promote improved male wellbeing."
Being able to connect online has become an important part of life but not everyone is able to do this confidently so the Tasmanian Government has developed 'Digital Ready for Daily Life' to help Tasmanian's keep in touch with family and friends, engage with business and health services or even just for entertainment.
'Every stat tells a story' and the 2021 Australian Census is a chance for family and friend carers to be counted. With almost 11% of the population providing unpaid care to others, stats from the Census can help tell a story of when and where services should be delivered to help those in need. Make sure that carers are counted on Census night.
Find Help Tas offers a central, online directory of health and social services available in communities around the state. Searching for help can be time consuming and confusing however the Find Help TAS website offers a simple search function based on category and location making it easier to find help.
I LIKE IT WHEN ...
"I like it when ..." was the question posed to an online community of family and friend carers recently as part of Carers Week in the UK. The result is a list of things that carers appreciate others doing for them such as listening, including and even learning about the specific challenges of caring.
Flynn's Walk started in 2018 to honour Dr Flynn Hargreaves (BVSc) and shine a light on the suicide rate of veterinarians (about four times that of the general population). Flynn's Talk is a podcast featuring conversations with animal lovers, professionals and many more. Grab a coffee or jump on the treadmill and have a listen.
MCT founder Greg shared recently that he has joined the team at RUOK? as a Community Ambassador, a role where he aims to help promote regular, meaningful conversations with others. You can register for the virtual 2021 campaign launch on this Thursday from 12 noon and find out how to get involved.
Battling a bout of debilitating anxiety whilst filming a popular national TV show set Brent Draper on a path to seeking help and he is now encouraging others to find the support they need. Brent is on the latest episode of 'Skip This' a podcast where hosts Browny and Luke explore the world of Mental Health with a wide range of guests.
"One haircut, one conversation at a time." is how New Zealand barber Halene Ikiua is trying to help other men turn their lives around for the better. With time to think during a stint behind bars, Halene gained a new perspective on life. For him the barbershop is a 'place where pretences are stripped off at the door and honest conversations can happen.'
Dementia Australia volunteer Chris Finley proudly say's that "Volunteering has made my transition form carer much easier". Confronting but cathartic is how John describes sharing his story and experiences with other men about caring for his late wife Wendy. Volunteering is a positive way to share your time, skills and knowledge.
Shame, guilt, anger are the emotions former Wallaby Tony Daly uses to describe how experiencing child sexual abuse made him feel. Speaking up is hard and can take men up to 25 years to say something. 'Talk to a mate who can relate' is the message from SAMSN because as Tony say's "if you keep hiding it, it's gunna get the better of you"
"My depression doesn't make me weak" Australian television presenter and sports journalist Brad McEwan lost his brother and father to suicide in the space of two years. Speaking on the Beyond Blue 'Not Alone' podcast Brad talks about the need to shift attitudes that stop many men from speaking up when they are struggling.
Who's on your team? During Men's Health Week, Healthy Male are asking Australian men to think about people who are supporting good physical, emotional, and social health. Mates, family, colleagues and a GP are a few key members of your team who can help you with staying connected and seeking support early when somethings not quiet right.
"My frustration almost boils over into anger .. but quickly gives way to sorrow when I see mum in the chair, looking slight and self-pitying" Jim Pavlidis reflects on the role and responsibility of caring for his ageing parents. He also recognises that the "physical demands vary week to week, but the emotional challenges can be the toughest."
Founder of the Tough Guy Book Club Shay Leighton hits the nail on the head in saying that "it’s healthy for men to find an interest outside of work or home, and not everyone is into DIY or sports." From sci-fi to war stories and classic literature the TGBC offers a chance for men to socialise and have interesting, character driven conversations
CARE TO TALK
Discussion of Tasmanian men in unpaid caring roles will feature this Friday during the free, online Men's Health Connected Summit. CEO of Carers Tasmania and Care 2 Serve David Brennan will be joined by Care 2 Serve counsellor Michael James and Men Care Too founder Greg Smith to discuss male carers in the Apple Isle.
Building on the success of last years Men's Health Connected online summit the Australian Men's Health Forum are backing up in 2021 with another free week long online gathering. With speakers on various themes ranging from health literacy to suicide prevention, the May 10-14 event is a must for anyone working with men and boys.
The topic of alcohol, drugs and addiction will be the focus during the SANE Australia anonymous online discussion forum which is on tomorrow evening. A counsellor from Australia’s leading national addiction treatment, training and research centre, Turning Point will be online to talk about substance use, mental health and recovery.
Facilitated by men for men, a new online support group is providing a space where men can find information and resources to help them better understand and support a partner or family member living with an eating disorder. Starting in May, Strive4Men will run quarterly and be held via zoom in the late evening. Visit EDFA for more info.
An article shared by Healthy Male prior to the holiday period aimed at encouraging important conversations offers useful tips that can be used any day of the year. Normalising healthy habits, learning about your family health history and reaching our to a mate who has been going through a tough time are all important conversations we can have at anytime.
Thank you to Lynne and the team at UK organisation Carers Hearts for sharing interviews with men in caring roles during March. David and Richard explore what is it like for men in a same sex relationship to navigate social and health supports then in another interview Brian speaks about campaigning to support carers who are working whilst juggling family care roles.
MATES DAY TRIP
Taking time away from your caring responsibilities can create feelings of guilt, stress and anxiety, I know because I feel it every time I leave the house. What is also true though, is over time the more often you make time to step out of that caring role and take a break, you become a little more at ease doing so. We had a short break last week with the MCT Mates Day Trip.
'Connecting Men for a Better World' is the aim of the inaugural Online Men's Gathering between March 26-28th. Featuring workshops, guest speakers, sharing circles and networking sessions on topics such as relationships, finances, art, communication and leadership, the gathering has something for everyone, is free and you can come and go as you please.
"Do something that is going to put your head in a different space, even for a little while, to take a break from the stress and worry that comes with being a carer". Greg from MCT recently had a chat with Carers Hearts co-founder Lynne, as part of a series of workshops, interviews and more to mark Male Carer Month in the UK. Follow Carers Hearts online for a wide look at the role of family and friend carers.
When you mark Thursday 9th September 2021 in your calendar to celebrate RUOK? Day, set yourself a weekly reminder to check in on a mate, neighbour, colleague or anyone else in your world that you know may be going through a difficult time. We are all busy in our own worlds but a simple phone call or text message to let a mate know you're thinking of them could change someone's life.
The 'Man Enough To Care' series of videos are a 'celebration of the love and care and a recognition of the time, energy and personal sacrifice that comes with taking care of someone you love.' Featuring men from different backgrounds, writing, acting, research and an NFL player, this roundtable discussion sets a new benchmark for how we talk about caring and masculinity.
MATES DAY TRIP
Explore a 'World class public display of motor vehicles and motorcycles showcasing Australia's motoring heritage' Thanks to Mr Perfect, the MCT "MATES Day Trip' is a chance for men in the North of the state to take a break from regular responsibilities whilst connecting with other blokes who understand how life is a little different when caring for others.
KEEPING IN TOUCH
Resource hub K.I.T, developed by Australian mental health and disability support organisation Wellways, aims to encourage connection with others around a wide variety of life challenges. From mental health and suicide prevention, to tips and ideas for family and friend carers, the Keeping In Touch hub website provides a handy starting point for information and ideas.
MORE THAN A BBQ
This Sunday we are proud to be part of Mr Perfect Ulverstone marking one year since our first BBQ. With three men at that initial BBQ 12 months ago, we now regularly see around 20 men attending each month for a dose of sunshine, mateship and of course a feed. Beating isolation and loneliness for Aussie men one snag at a time.
'Parenting Through IIlness' presented by Canteen Community Education is the first in a series of free online webinars aimed at supporting parents and families who are unwell or facing a life limiting illness. Preparing for an open and honest conversation with your children is one of the key points covered.
Carers and people living with a disability belong to a group of people likely to experience loneliness according to a new white paper published by Ending Loneliness Together. The Australian initiative is looking to raise awareness, uncover evidence and build tools to help combat what is one of the leading issues affecting many Australians.
Picking up groceries, running errands or a friendly phone call are just a few examples of the support you can either access, or offer, through the Australian initiative Crisis Heroes. Built in response to the pandemic, the FREE community platform is helping connect people who are willing and able to provide a helping hand with members of the community who are in need of practical assistance or simply someone to talk with.
Do you want to be more organised, focused, productive and in control of your days? One way to achieve this is by developing a routine. It doesn't need to be a strict, ridged schedule but more a flexible plan that works for you, a guide for how to approach the day or week, so that you can achieve the things you want to get done.
Pay someone a compliment, open a door or simply smile at a stranger are all easy ways that we can show kindness to others. This Friday is World Kindness Day and a chance to celebrate all the kind things you see and do everyday that takes on a special importance during difficult times . And remember that being kind to yourself is okay too.
Providing connection, tools, stories and inspiration is the aim of Blue Knot Day. Held on October 28th to recognise the more than 5 million or 1 in 4 Australian adults who have experienced complex trauma in their lifetime. Abuse and trauma can be difficult to understand, however the Blue Knot Foundation has some helpful tips so you can offer appropriate support to others.
“Incredibly proud to have the title of ‘carer’ for someone who is his best friend” is how Michael Casha describes being part of his brother David's support network. The past year has seen us all having to adjust to new ways of living and has presented a big challenge to those who are providing unpaid, informal care to someone else.
A double celebration for us here in Tassie this week so we've teamed up with 'Mental Health's Mate' Mr Perfect and the NW Suicide Prevention Trial Site to host a free BBQ breakfast in Ulverstone for Seniors Week and National Carers Week. Over 22,000 Tasmanians aged 65 years and older provide unpaid, informal care and support to someone, making a huge difference in the community.
National Carers Week kicks off next Sunday and one highlight will be the 'Let's Talk About Male Carers' online event hosted by Lane Cove Council. Relationships Australia NSW counsellor Michael Riley will be talking with men in caring roles about caring from a male perspective. Visit state or territory Carer Organisations for other events and activities in Carers Week