A goal-directed woodwork group for men in community rehabilitation - A pilot project

Shelley Fulton, Daniel Clohesy, Francis M. Wise, Kerryn Woolley, Natasha Lannin

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Aims: Male clients who attend community rehabilitation programs often have low engagement in meaningful occupations and thus suffer a disconnect with their community. The primary aim of this mixed methods study was to explore the feasibility of using a therapeutic woodwork group to engage male clients in community rehabilitation. Method: In the context of a community rehabilitation setting, fourteen clients attended an 8-week woodwork group to engage in meaningful projects developed with an occupational therapist to achieve specific goals. The group also aimed to encourage male peer support and interaction in an outpatient group setting. Clients identified three rehabilitation goals which guided their rehabilitation intervention. Goal achievement was rated pre- and post-group using the Goal Attainment Scale, one of two Quality of Life scales were administered to measure change in self-reported quality of life. Participants were interviewed pre- and post-group to measure woodwork experience and the group process. Results: Results from the pilot project indicate that 85.7% of clients attained their expected level of goal achievement or higher on set rehabilitation goals. Consistent positive feedback was received from those who attended the group, particularly in the area of skill development and socialisation, although patients reported minimal changes in quality of life from baseline to end-of-group (P > 0.05). Conclusion: There remains an unmet need for meaningful engagement for men in the community who are not currently engaged in paid work. Community-based occupational therapy programs have the opportunity to play an important role in engaging clients in meaningful occupations, including woodwork, which was shown to increase socialisation and lead to goal attainment in our small sample. Future research should explore if rehabilitation woodwork groups can assist people to transition to participate in community-based Men's Sheds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-36
Number of pages8
JournalAustralian Occupational Therapy Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Goal directed
  • Group work
  • Men's health
  • Men's shed
  • Rehabilitation services

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