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I was pleased to lead for the SNP in a debate about International Men’s Day, and talked about the themes for this year, including the importance of positive male role models.

It is important that we all recognise and celebrate the contribution of men to our families, our communities and our country. We must work to ensure that men are more willing to talk about their hopes and fears, and take more care of their health and wellbeing. We have to do more to remove the stubborn stigma that persists around mental health issues and to continue the conversation about it being okay to struggle and about it not being a sign of weakness for a man to ask for help.

I was pleased to be able to pay tribute to two men’s sheds in North Ayrshire and Arran - one in the Three Towns, and one in the Garnock Valley. Those men’s sheds, like others across the country, offer support, friendship and skills-sharing. They are run by volunteers and welcome all men aged 18 and above. I have seen first-hand the camaraderie, friendship and positivity that men’s sheds foster.

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