SBS Hampshire: supporting men in our communities

SBS is a partnership of 10 organisations, including Hampshire County Council, whose aim is to improve men’s physical health and mental wellbeing, reduce social isolation and increase men’s participation in their communities and employment.


About SBS Hampshire

SBS logo

The project delivered a new model to improve men’s mental and physical health/wellbeing using spaces where men meet, learn new skills and take part in practical activities.

45 groups in Hampshire helped to develop and test the model, encouraging more men to take control of their health and wellbeing.

The project produced a suite of documents to help support other areas and organisations to implement the model.

Although the target group for SBS was men the new SBS workshops were also open to women.

The Project also created the Men’s Activity Network of male-focused community groups in Hampshire. The network will now continue as a community-owned network to improve men's health.

Reasons for the project

We know men access health services less than women and they experience poorer physical health outcomes. Suicide rates for men across Europe are increasing and unemployment, non-participation, isolation and poor mental health are contributing factors.  Depression and other mental health problems are under-detected and under-treated.

Men’s physical health in all areas is similarly poor. Studies have shown that the unemployed suffer more health problems, including mental health, than those in work and the longer people stay off work when sick, the less likely they are to return.

How men currently access health services

Currently health services (general practice, dentists, pharmacies) are under-used by men, with adverse impacts on their health, their families and communities, employers and health and social care budgets.  Men are also less likely to make use of preventative health checks such as oral health, sight and screening.

Earlier work has shown that men see a clear need for a different way of providing services to them within their local communities.

Funding and partners

The partnership secured more than €2.6 million of European funding from the EU Interreg 2 Seas Programme 2014-2020 (co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund), which supported this project between 2017 and 2021.

SBS partners

Hampshire County Council worked with:

  • The Health and Europe Centre (UK)
  • Kent County Council (UK)
  • Bolwerk (Belgium)
  • Wattrelos Association of Community Centres (France)
  • ADICE – Association for the development of citizen and European initiatives (France)
  • Community Centre Jean Ferrat Arques (France)
  • Community Centre ‘De Mussen’ (Netherlands)
  • Wellbeing People (UK)

There were also a number of observer partners: The Department of Work and Pensions; Southampton City Council; UK Men’s Sheds Association; Maison de l’emploi de Valenciennois; Werkgevers Service Punt; Conseil Départemental du Nord.

Find out more
More information about the Model and the evaluation.
Contact details
If you have questions about the Hampshire aspects of the project email: [email protected]