Shay Leighton

Quietly behind the scenes, Shay has been building a thriving support network for men in the form of a book club. Shay started the Tough Guy Book Club in Collingwood during 2013, spending countless hours in his spare time developing this unique program that provides support, community and a space for men to have conversations they wouldn't otherwise be having. These are conversations about men and masculinity that are important not only to the mental health and wellbeing of the members but also for the women and children around them who benefit from interventions that promote healthy expressions of masculinity and the health of men in their lives. Not one to toot his own horn, Shay would never describe himself as a hero, and rarely shows the extent of the work he dedicates to the running of TGBC - preferring the collective 'we' when referring to things the club has achieved, such as running a campaign to get guys to go to the GP for annual check-ups, or the challenging and time-consuming work of adjusting the format of the club's monthly in-person meetings (the model which has formed the backbone of TGBC) to online in the recent times of COVID-19 - successfully maintaining the engagement of members and combatting isolation. All this Shay does quietly as a volunteer in time he finds around full-time work. t

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