March 2022 Newsletter
From the President
AGM and Xmas Party
David Churchyard was presented with an award for his services during the year. He took over sole management in the Office during COVID times! A huge job, requiring him to man the Office for 4 days each week. This is a voluntary position like all others, and if you watch what happens in that Office on an average day, it takes the patience of Job, the hide of a rhinoceros and the wisdom of the ages. Thanks again Dave and we all look forward to Rob Houston (Solomon) returning.
Disability services Members
Increasingly members are stepping up to help both at the Friday setup before the sale and at the Saturday sale days. They have become somewhat of a social occasion, members getting a chance to meet and yarn. In this spirit, the Shed provides a breakfast, sausages, eggs etc and refreshments as a thank you to helpers. Organised and cooked by Dave!
Members Health & Well Being
Good health is based on many factors including feeling good about yourself, being productive, contributing to your community, connecting with friends and maintaining an active body and mind. Becoming a member of a Men’s Shed provides a safe and busy environment where men can find many of these things in an atmosphere of old-fashioned mateship. And, importantly, there is no pressure. Men can just come and have a yarn and a cuppa if that is all they’re looking for.
Members of Men’s Sheds come from all walks of life – the bond that unites them is that they are men with time on their hands and would like something meaningful to do with that time.
Member Profile: Alan Cook
Alan joined the Shed in 2016 at the Marcia street premises. He has always been keen to figure out how things work and has always enjoyed fixing equipment for family and friends. Nothing is too big or small for Alan to tackle. His attitude being that he can't make matters worse even if he has a few screws/bolts left over.
They married and moved to Sydney for 6 years, where their two boys were born. Jenni’s brothers had moved to Coffs Harbour and set up an air conditioning factory. They were followed by Jenni’s parents and in 1989 they decided to move up also. Not long after Alan’s parents and his sister also moved to Coffs. Ann his sister built the Butterfly House and ran it until 2000.
If you haven't used a machine for sometime or just want help operating a machine, please ask at the Office.
Remember it is always better to be safe than sorry.
If a machine is not working properly please either report it to the Office or write it up on the white board outside the store room next to the drop saw. We have a maintenance schedule but naturally things wear out. The committee strives to maintain the Shed at optimum usage for members but your help is required in reporting issues, returning tools and equipment to their storage areas and using the tools for the purposes that they were designed.
Brian Franklin is our resident electrician, tagging all our electricals and is an enthusiastic member of the maintenance team. Working on the troublesome table router.
To advance the health and well-being of Shed members in the Coffs Coast region by providing a safe, happy and non-judgemental environment where skilled and unskilled members of all ages and abilities can, in the company of other members pursue hobbies, pastimes and interests, learn new skills, practice and pass on old skills, learn about their own and others health and well-being, and by their efforts contribute to their families, friends, the shed and the broader community.
We are now at a point where we can take a broader look at the activities available to members and develop a more inclusive culture for those members who are not as skilled or interested in making and repairing things. The Shedman, our music group and band has been a successful and welcome addition to the activities available at the Shed.
Tool Box meetings will be held at morning tea during week 3 following the Committee meeting to raise issues with members.
Free member lunches will be provided on Tuesday, week 3, every month, as an initiative to promote social interaction away from the tools.
An increasing number of members are playing Crib during breaks. All are welcome to take part. If it becomes popular enough it could be offered as a regular activity at the Shed.
All members have a Competency Form kept in their file in the Office. It is important that you are signed off to use equipment in the Shed. In fact, it is a legal requirement for insurance and accreditation. The register must be kept up to date since the insurance company can refuse compensation claims for injury etc. if it is not. They have the right to request access to these records in processing claims. Please remember, equipment is replaced/updated as required. If you are unsure of your status please ask at the Office.
Improvements to the Shed
The latest addition to our Shed: A small milling machine for processing logs.
Management of snakebites
• 3000 bites are reported annually.
• 300-500 hospitalisations
• 2-3 deaths annually.
The average time to death is 12 hours. The urban myth that you are bitten in the yard and die before you can walk from your chook pen back to the house is a load of rubbish.
While not new, the management of snakebites (like a flood/fire evacuation plan or CPR) should be refreshed each season. Let’s start with a basic overview.
Five genera of snakes will harm us (seriously) Browns, Blacks, Adders, Tigers and Taipans.
All snake venom is made up of huge proteins (like egg white). When bitten, a snake injects some venom into the meat of your limb (NOT into your blood). This venom cannot be absorbed into the bloodstream from the bite site. It travels in a fluid transport system in your body called the lymphatic system (not the bloodstream).
Now, this fluid (lymph) is moved differently to blood. Your heart pumps blood around, so even when you are lying dead still, your blood still circulates through the body. Lymph fluid is different. It moves around with physical muscle movement like bending your arm, bending knees, wriggling fingers and toes, walking/exercise etc.
Now here is the thing. Lymph fluid becomes blood after these lymph vessels converge to form one of two large vessels (lymphatic trunks) which are connected to veins at the base of the neck.
Back to the snake bite site.
When bitten, the venom has been injected into this lymph fluid (which makes up the bulk of the water in your tissues). The only way that the venom can get into your bloodstream is to be moved from the bite site in the lymphatic vessels. The only way to do this is to physically move the limb/s that were bitten. Stay still!!! Venom can’t move if the victim doesn’t move. Stay still!!
Remember people are not bitten into their bloodstream.
In the 1980s a technique called Pressure immobilisation bandaging was developed to further retard venom movement. It completely stops venom /lymph transport toward the bloodstream.
A firm roll bandage is applied directly over the bite site (don’t wash the area).
Technique: Three steps: keep them still
Step 1: Apply a bandage over the bite site, to an area about 10cm above and below the bite.
Step 2: Then using another elastic roller bandage, apply a firm wrap from Fingers/toes all the way to the armpit/groin. The bandage needs to be firm, but not so tight that it causes fingers or toes to turn purple or white. About the tension of a sprain bandage.
Step 3: Splint the limb so the patient can’t walk or bend the limb.
• Do not cut, incise or suck the venom.
• Do not EVER use a tourniquet
• Don’t remove the shirt or pants – just bandage over the top of the clothing.Remember movement (like wriggling out of a shirt or pants) causes venom movement.
• DO NOT try to catch, kill or identify the snake!!! This is important. In the hospital we NO LONGER NEED to know the type of snake; it doesn’t change the treatment.
5 years ago we would do a test on the bite, blood or urine to identify the snake so the correct anti-venom can be used. BUT NOW…we don’t do this.
Australian snakes tend to have 3 main effects in differing degrees.
1. Bleeding – internally and bruising.
2. Muscles paralysed causing difficulty talking, moving & breathing.
In some snakes severe muscle pain in the limb, and days later the bite site can break down forming a nasty wound.
Allergy to snakes is rarer than winning lotto twice.
Final tips: not all bitten people are envenomated and only those starting to show symptoms above are given antivenom.
Did I mention to stay very still?
Management 2022 (voluntary)
President: Chris Hansen
Vice President: Robert Houston
Secretary: Tony Winter
Treasurer: Garth Howard
Assistant Secretary: Warren Sanger
Assistant Treasurer: Ken Ryan
Shed Managers & Office Administration:
Health & Welfare Officers:
Metalwork / Engineering:
Equipment Maintenance:Ken Ryan
Supporters of the Coffs Harbour Men's Shed
The Coffs Harbour Community Men's Shed wishes to thank all our supporters, both large and small,
for their ongoing support and generous donations of time and money.