November 19, is International Men’s Day, and in Australia, the theme is “Celebrating Mateship” to inspire more men to #MakeTime4Mates. It is a day to highlight positive role models in our society and raise awareness of men’s well-being.
Mateship is a key feature of our national identity and close male friendships and comradery have been proven to help men live longer, better, and healthier lives. A career in the construction industry can be a great lifestyle choice for many as it provides a supportive network of mates and the many benefits of working within a team.
Master Builders is supporting International Men’s Day, by encouraging more men to #MakeTime4Mates and build strong social connections by;
- Making time for old mates
- Making time to make new mates
- Checking in on mates who might be doing it tough.
The Construction industry is a place where friendships can thrive for all. This November 19 we want to take the opportunity to shine the light on some of our Master Builders Apprentices who have proven to be great role models and great contributors to the culture of their teams.
Master Builders apprentice, Duc Thanh Dinh, loves the comradery of his workplace. Coming from Vietnam, and with many of his family still based there – his workplace and workmates help give him a real sense of belonging. “It’s important for me to forge relationships at work, so it’s more than just work for me. We talk about our hobbies, our families, we ask questions and get to know one another on a personal level – and for me, that’s what builds friendships and makes work fun”.
For 20-year-old Zach Ellis who is new to the building and construction industry, he has been grateful for the encouraging words and practical support he has received throughout his training so far. He looks forward to being able to pay that support forward as his career develops.
The most successful construction sites are those where everyone is looking out for each other and working together for common goals. Taking the time to check in, being a sounding board, and having another set of hands and eyes all help to prevent the overwhelming feeling of a busy day – which is when mistakes happen. It’s important to encourage open lines of communication between colleagues and managers onsite, understanding that communication, feeling heard and recognised are important factors in men’s well-being.
Apprentice Tony Benger, 34 years old, agrees stating ‘It’s important to have mates in all aspects of life, but especially on a construction site where there are always problems to solve, pressures to deliver, and a lot of activity going on.” Tony continues” A mate is someone who is on your side. They want the best for you. It could be as simple as a supportive word or a gentle push in the right direction. A mate is someone you are in a win-win situation with. Mates help their mates be better versions of themselves.”
In addition to the work that we do, Master Builders supports MATES In Construction, a not-for-profit organisation working to prevent suicide in male-dominated industries since 2008. MATES builds on the quintessential Aussie characteristics of Mateship by giving workers the tools they need to keep an eye on their mates’ mental health.
Whatever your friendships and relationships look like – this November 19, we ask that you take some time to look out for others and be a good mate. And then keep being one – all year round.