A SKILLED MATE: Ron Davis from the Men and Family Centre in Lismore will travel to Grafton to run a Skilled Mates workshop. Pho
A SKILLED MATE: Ron Davis from the Men and Family Centre in Lismore will travel to Grafton to run a Skilled Mates workshop. Pho

It?s men?s business, minus the secrets

By EMMA CORNFORD

ecornford@dailyexaminer.com.au

LIKE many men, Bill Taylor found divorce difficult.

As he looked for ways to fill his time, he stumbled across an advertisement for Mensline ? a helpline for men going through tough times.

He became a volunteer, but when callers kept asking where they could go to get more help, he and his fellow volunteers had to say there was nowhere else to turn. So they developed the Men and Family Centre in Lismore.

The centre runs courses in anger management and communication skills to help men find ways to develop better relationships with their partners, children and in the community. Now those courses are coming to the Clarence Valley.

"If this had been available for me I am absolutely sure that things would have been different for me and my kids," said Mr Taylor, the Mobile Men's Shed outreach program coordinator.

"But it's never too late to change the way you do things and learn these new skills. They will always help."

Mr Taylor and his colleague Ron Davis will travel to Grafton next weekend to run a specialised program called 'Skilled Mates', which aims to improve communication and conflict resolution skills. It also provides information about domestic and family violence.

"We're not into giving advice ? it's about facilitating the opportunities for blokes to be able to find their own solutions to problems they might be having," Mr Taylor said.

"It's often incredibly difficult for a fella to approach us and say 'I'm having problems', because there's that perception that blokes should be able to deal with anything. Often times they're not, but having these skills can really help them cope."

The 10-session course will run from Friday night May 19 until Sunday May 21 and the following weekend on May 27 and 28. Contact Bill or Ron on 6622 6116 for information or to book.



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