Alzheimer’s support


John Tonkin inside the new men’s shed at the Mary Chester Club. Picture: Andrew Ritchie  d450085
John Tonkin inside the new men’s shed at the Mary Chester Club. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d450085

Alzheimer’s WA and Subiaco Men’s Shed volunteers Balcatta resident Terry Byrne and Alan Pickford have spent hours designing and building the men’s shed and now co-ordinate projects.

Mr Pickford said the joy of working in the men’s shed was worth all the effort the pair had put into making it a reality.

“I have learnt a lot working with people who have Alzheimer’s, which is a terrible condition that doesn’t discriminate. Anyone can be affected,” he said.

“They are all individuals and some need more guidance and help than others.

“I think they like it because they can do things without any pressure, and they have an ongoing project to work on.

“They get so much joy from putting things together and building things.”

Mr Byrne said that after watching his wife suffer with Alzheimer’s for 20 years, he was hesitant about the project.

“Now I really do enjoy coming here; I really get a kick out of helping these guys,” he said.

“The fellowship between the men here is pretty important too.”

Club manager Angela Pothan said the men’s shed provided a great sense of camaraderie.

“I think it gives them a real sense of achievement because they see an end product,” she said.

“At Christmas hey made items that they sold and we’re planning on doing that on a slightly larger scale this year.”