A BANDON garage has for the second time in as many years donated a van to Bandon’s Men Shed who are using it for a variety of community tasks, including distributing food to charities.
Sean Clarke of Clarke Bros Bandon recently presented a second van, a Peugeot Partner, to Paul Johnson, chairman of Bandon Men’s Shed, which was set up five years ago and now has about 30 members from all different age groups.
‘This offer really reflects the community spirit of Clarke Bros. It was a massive thing for Sean to give us another van which will really help our organisation,’ said Tom McCleary, co-ordinator of Bandon Men’s Shed.
‘As far as I’m aware, we may be the only Men’s Shed in the region who have been given a van to help and hopefully other Men’s Shed around the country could take a lead from this and approach their local garages.’
Sean Clarke gave the group their first van in 2014 after the group approached him about the idea and Tom and his members are delighted to now have the use of a newer vehicle for their jobs, replacing the older van.
‘We carry out a lot of projects around the town and one we’re involved with is “Bandon in Bloom” so the van is handy for transporting plants and flowers from our allotment to the town,’ he explained.
‘As well as that we use the van for bringing some of our members to the recycling site, as well as taking them to hospital appointments too, so it’s invaluable to us as some of our members are elderly and may not have their own transport.’
Another project that the group have got involved with recently is Food Cloud - which links retailers with surplus food to charities - and their vans are hugely beneficial for this.
‘At the moment we’re working with Lidl and they give us unsold fruit and vegetables which we distribute to people around the town. We are also getting Aldi on board for this,’ added Tom.
Bandon Men’s Shed is based on Weir Street. See ‘Bandon Men’s Shed’ on Facebook.