Irish Men’s Sheds CEO Barry Sheridan travelled to Iceland last week to help open the country’s very first ever men’s shed.
Mr Sheridan is Chief Executive Officer of the Irish Men’s Sheds Association (IMSA), an all-Ireland movement of over 400 community spaces open to men of all ages and backgrounds.
The Irish Men’s Sheds Association is acknowledged as a world leader in the field of men’s shed development. The IMSA played an advisory role in the setting up of the shed by the Icelandic Red Cross. A delegation from the Red Cross, led by Hörður Sturluson, visited sheds in Ireland last year.
Speaking at the launch, Sheridan said: “It’s been fantastic, I could have been walking into any shed in Ireland. The atmosphere, the energy and the spirit of sharing and learning are exactly the same. There’s been a huge reaction here in Iceland, and the Icelandic Red Cross are hoping this is the first of many sheds. Our presence here today also underscores the potential for the IMSA to play a leading role in the development of men’s sheds in Europe”.
The Irish Men's Sheds Association were winners of the prestigious AONTAS STAR Award in 2017 and the prize included an opportunity to take part in an ERASMUS+ KA1 programme.
The Iceland trip was one of 22 learning exchanges organised by AONTAS, the national adult learning organisation, to support the professional development of adult and community education practitioners in Ireland through the ERASMUS+ programme.
Speaking about the visit AONTAS CEO Niamh O’Reilly said: “We’re delighted to offer this opportunity to STAR Award winners, the Irish Men's Sheds Association. Ireland’s lifelong learning system has a great reputation at EU level and ERAMSUS+ offers the opportunity to not only engage in continuous professional development but share expertise and importantly enable intercultural learning.
AONTAS is committed to supporting its members to take up ERASMUS+ opportunities for reciprocal learning and to bring back new ideas, and perhaps a renewed appreciation of the expertise that exists in further, adult and community education. Ultimately it’s about adult learners benefiting from well trained staff.
Contact: Katie O’Rourke, Communications Lead AONTAS, Tel: 01-4068220/ 086-1579418, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.