A program designed to enrich the lives of older men has undertaken a tree planting program with a difference. The Mukinbudin 50’s Men’s Shed restores old machinery and has used a 1965 Chamberlain Super 90 tractor to plant 4500 seedlings. The seedlings were provided as part of a $4500 grant by Wheatbelt NRM (formerly Avon Catchment Council) , as part of the Network Support and Development Incentive Scheme. Mukinbudin’s Natural Resource Management Officer Tracey Hobbs said the tree planting was a result of an agreement with CBH.
“CBH has allowed the Men’s Shed to farm land the grain handler owned next to its silos using vintage machinery,” Tracey Hobbs said. “But as part of the agreement, they had to plant trees to tackle salinity. “When they finish the project, it will improve the appearance of the area, but more importantly help to stop salt creeping towards the town.” The Men’s Shed movement offers men, particularly retired men, a place to meet and carry out activities including woodwork and metal work. Roy Jones is part of the Mukinbudin 50’s Farm Group and helped restore the Chamberlain tractor.
“We restore plenty of vintage machinery, much of which is actively used for cropping, and in this case, tree planting,” Roy Jones said. “Without this grant from Wheatbelt NRM, it would have been too costly to do the tree planting, so we’re very grateful. “It is a degraded area that joins a salt lake flowing through the district, and the remnant vegetation is starting to die, so we are re-planting the trees to rehabilitate it.” Roy Jones said there were about 25 local men involved in the Men’s Shed which began in 2007. “Most of us are retired, and this gives us something to do and is an important link to the community,” Roy Jones said.
WA’s first Men’s Shed Conference will be held in Mukinbudin next month titled “Bloke’s Building Better Communities”. The event is scheduled for Thursday 3rd and Friday 4th September 2009. For more information contact the Shire of Mukinbudin on 9047 1102.
Media Contact: Cilla Wilson, Wheatbelt NRM, 9690 2250 or 0428 777 287