Some folks looking at a landfill look down their noses.
Yet, I can’t help but regard “trash” and wonder,
What if all of those legless chairs, busted blenders,
tattered clothes, and dented fenders
had been patched instead of pitched?
Are you as tired as I am of how toss-away we’ve become?
Then you’ll love the idea of a Repair Café.
Launched in Europe a few years ago, this reconstructive revolution is sweeping the globe, rescuing all sorts of useful stuff from death-by-dumpster.
“Lots of people have forgotten that they can repair things themselves, or they no longer know how,” says founder Martine Postma. “Society doesn’t always show much appreciation for the people who still have this practical knowledge, but the Repair Café is changing all that.”
Repair Cafés are free meeting places that are all about repairing things together. They furnish tools and materials to repair clothes, furniture, electrical appliances, bicycles, crockery, appliances, toys, and more. Plus, visitors have the opportunity to connect with fix-it specialists who’ll lend a hand and share their know-how. It’s an ongoing learning process, Postma says, and valuable skills are getting passed from person to person. She believes that the Repair Café environment teaches people to see possessions in a new light and to appreciate their value.
Currently, there are only five Repair Cafés in the U.S. (see the list here).
If there isn’t one near you, it might just be time to start your own. The Repair Café Foundation supports start-ups with a comprehensive manual and promotional materials to help you spread the word.
With a smidgen of elbow grease, you’ll be on your way to enhancing your community with a Repair Café. Wish I had the time. I LOVE this idea.