Ronseal is celebrating the work of the Men’s Shed Association in a powerful new film launching this week. The Shed has been produced by Rumpus Media, for Channel 4 and will be shown across their social channels from 14th June.
Launched to mark Men’s Health Week (14th – 20th June), it features an emotional interview with Joe Regan, whose son Jaxon was tragically stillborn in 2019.
The moving documentary, which also features Joel Bird from Channel 4’s ‘The Great Garden Revolution’, follows Joe, 30, as he visits the Camden Men’s Shed, in North London, and openly talks to another member about his experience and the struggles he’s faced. He’s also seen being helped to make a sentimental memory box for the little boy he lost and for his second son Jude, who has just arrived in April 2021.
The Men’s Shed Association has been providing safe and welcoming spaces for men to get together and talk since 2013, and now has more than 500 sheds across the UK.
Members come together to enjoy the social element, as well as use the workshop’s facilities and share practical skills. The Sheds across the country have proven invaluable in boosting the moral and improving the overall wellbeing of its members.
Joe admits that spending time at a shed and sharing skills and tools to create something special for his family has been a hugely positive experience.
As he explains to craftsman, Joel Bird, and fellow shedder, Mick Tague, losing his son caused him to struggle with his mental health so much that he contemplated suicide. He says: “You feel the need to be strong for your partner but sometimes you need someone to ask how you’re doing.
“It led to me to think about taking my own life. That was the reality of bottling things up – it got to that stage. When a bloke says they’re not in a good place, we all need to support it.”
Reflecting on his time at the shed, he adds: “Anything that takes your mind away is good. Being in the shed is therapeutic and a fantastic outlet.”
As craftsman, Joel, explains: “Places like this are great – you don’t have to be talking a lot but even a little amount can stop that lock up of emotions.”
Ronseal has been sponsoring Men’s Sheds across the UK since 2018.
As Jane Ryder, European Marketing Director at Sherwin Williams, Ronseal says: “We are really proud to be supporting the Men’s Shed Movement in the UK and Ireland. The work they do today, as we move slowly out of lockdown, is more vital than ever. We hope this film will connect with people who may know someone who would benefit from joining the shed network and as such we’re humbled to have been allowed to follow Joe’s journey – including the recent arrival of his new baby.”
Charlie Bethel of the UK Men’s Shed Association said: “This week is Men’s Health Week and as Joe’s experience shows, we need to do more to support men to talk and connect. Our sheds give people the opportunity to get together in a safe space where they can get stuck into DIY and make friends. Learning practical skills as they go. I hope anyone who sees the film and thinks they would benefit from joining a shed gets in touch. We have groups for men and women of all ages.”
Laura Marks, Digital commissioner at Channel 4 added: “We’re really proud of this film and of this partnership. Joe’s story is one of those stories that will stick with you forever and it was a joy to work on.”
Morgan Roberts, Head of Factual Entertainment, Rumpus Media also said: “This is a hugely important campaign, that we’re delighted to be a part of. Community, connection and talking to others is vital for our wellbeing, as well as learning new skills. This movement offers this and more.”
For more information on the Men’s Shed Association, and to find a shed near you, visit menssheds.org.uk.