Repair Cafe

The first Repair Café organized by Martine Postma in Amsterdam (the one in the Netherlands) in 2009. That clip embedded above is from one of the events in the Netherlands and includes a short explainer from Postma.

Such is the modern world that a lot of stuff around the house gets thrown out when it's stopped working instead of being repaired.

But there's movement called the Repair Cafe that's trying to fix that (pun totally intended). The basic idea is that people bring in their broken household items to community events and volunteer repair coaches help with the repairs. For free.

There are two local Repair Cafe events coming up:

April 14: Schenectady County Public Library - 10 am to noon
The first Repair Cafe Schenectady will be in the McChesney Room of the central library (99 Clinton Street in downtown Schenectady). "Examples of some of the items you can bring to be fixed include: small electric appliances (especially lamps and vacuums,) furniture/wooden objects, clothing/textiles, Dolls/toys, jewelry, watches/clocks, bicycles, ceramics and general mechanical (small items only, no gas powered machines.)" Repairs are limited to two items per household. There will also be bike tune-ups from the Electric City Bike Rescue.

April 14: Castleton-on-Hudson Village Hall - 11 am to 3 pm
The Castleton Repair Cafe will be at the village hall (85 South Main Street). "This month, electrical, welding and seamstress services are featured (such as repair of lamps, vacuums, metal, clothing), but bikes, toys, crockery, furniture are also possible... anything that is broken is welcome."

Both events are also on the lookout for volunteers -- see the links for how to contact organizers if you have some know-how you'd like to share.

We'd just add based on our own experience: Fixing a broken household appliance yourself can save money -- but it also feels awesome. The sound of a broken refrigerator whirring back to life or the coffee maker burbling again is the sound of accomplishment.

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