For a long time research has shown the negative impact of loneliness and isolation on a person’s health and wellbeing. Recently we have seen more evidence come to light that shows loneliness and isolation can be as hazardous to our health as obesity and excessive smoking. When someone loses a partner - perhaps after a long marriage or relationship- grief can add to all that in ways that impact on our physical and mental health.

Men typically find it more difficult to build social connections than women, and unlike women of a similar age, fewer older men have networks of friends and rarely share personal concerns about health and personal worries. It is not the case for all men, but for some, when retirement comes, it can feel like personal identity and purpose is lost. Similarly, when men are bereaved, they often find it difficult to grieve in a healthy way, often bottling up their emotions. Have a listen to this Mens Sheds short video.

Finding support and kinship with other men through a shared activity can change all of that.

Run by volunteers, 'Sheds' are about meeting like-minded people and having someone to share your worries with. Whilst not established with the purpose of providing bereavement support, engaging with others in practical and fun activities can help individuals gain a renewed sense of purpose and belonging when they have been bereaved. As a by-product of all of that, they reduce isolation and feelings of loneliness, allow men to deal with their mental health challenges more easily and remain independent, they rebuild communities and in many cases, they save men’s lives. is working with Men's Sheds to ensure that anyone joining a shed knows where to find bereavement support if they need it, in their local area. There are now Men's Sheds in all four regions of the UK.

To find a Shed in your local area CLICK HERE

The UK Association of Men's Sheds (UKMSA) provides advice and support to anyone setting up a shed in their area. You can read more about Men's Sheds HERE on their website. It will give you a good idea of what to expect if you are interested in joining one.