The Huon She Shed was launched at the Cygnet Town Hall last Saturday by inaugural president Mon Lulan and Huon Valley Mayor Bec Enders.
The Huon She Shed was born of a casual post on social media that drew a huge response, when Mon asked if there were any local women who were interested in becoming more self-reliant when it comes to handy jobs around the home.
With the support of Huon Valley Council and the Huon Agricultural Society, Mon has secured a leased premises at the Ranelagh Showgrounds to set up the Valley’s first She Shed, which will offer a safe and supportive space to meet and learn new skills in a supportive environment.
Mon said there will be an opportunity to attend workshops, as well as to use machinery and tools without having to make a huge monetary investment.
“This is just the first shed of maybe three or four,” said Mon.
“Whatever is needed.
“I know there’s some community sheds already, and we don’t want to interfere with that, so we’ll be working closely with the council to see where they are needed, and we’ll see what we can organise, but certainly Cygnet and the Huonville area.”
The Huon She Shed is an incorporated entity, and the initial board is made up of president Mon Lulan, treasurer Linda Dubois, secretary Tiffany Hutton and board member Jackie Iles.
Mon said they are looking to appoint one additional board member as well as a first aid officer.
Huon Valley Mayor Bec Enders is excited by the She Shed concept.
“I can absolutely understand the relevance of something like this in the Huon,” she said.
“There are a lot of women now in the Huon Valley that are over 50 and living on their own and they don’t plan to change that, and they don’t want to be reliant on getting a service in to do something that they believe would be fairly simple.
“The ability to be able to go into a safe, respectful environment, where they are treated as equals but are equipped with a level of skill that can help them maintain their own homes is incredibly empowering.
“And the self-esteem and confidence building are also really important.”
Mon said that, the Huon She Shed board will now seek suitable temporary premises in Cygnet until they can construct their own purpose-built premises.
Around 40 women attended the launch on Saturday, with 35 inaugural Huon She Shed members signed up and ready to go.
For further information, visit the Huon She Shed Facebook group.