In 2015, there were 2.7 million carers in Australia who provided some assistance to those who needed help because of disability or age. Although men make up less than a third of carers,¹ they remain hidden and largely unacknowledged in our community.
In response to the need to address issues for male carers, the Men as Carers gatherings were initiated in 1999 by Robyn Leslie from Central Grampians Commonwealth Carers Respite Centre and Carers’ Choice program, auspiced and supported by Grampians Community Health Centre, Stawell.
Ed McKinley and Glen Ochre from The Groupwork Institute of Australia facilitated the gatherings. They provided vast experience in group facilitation and working with men’s groups over many years.
Initially, it was difficult for the men to take the step of attending the gathering and talking about themselves and their role. However, the men who attended the first gathering reported that the time they spent together, sharing stories and experiences, was invaluable. From 1999 to 2006, gatherings were held twice a year, giving men the opportunity to talk about their feelings in a non-judgmental, nurturing environment with skilled facilitators guiding the discussions.
This DVD has been developed to help promote these gatherings. It was made possible by funding from the Commonwealth Carer Respite Centre and Carers’ Choice Grampians Region and with the kind assistance and participation of the facilitators and some of the men who have participated in the gatherings.
 Australian Bureau of Statistics (2015) Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers retrieved 15/11/17 from Carers Australia website