Fixing to fix, repair with care – Māngere Bridge Repair Café

Fixing to fix, repair with care – Māngere Bridge Repair Café

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Foot traffic in the Māngere Bridge Library was increased by 80% from the usual Saturday morning level, as people came in with their treasures for diagnosis and repair at the recent Friends of the Farm Summer Repair Café, run in partnership with the library.

Bikes, lamps, trousers, jerseys, shirt, pillowcases, books, soft toys, heaters, timers, scissors, knives, loppers, tablets and fans were among the items brought in. 

Out of the 80 items presented, 52 were fixed, keeping 77kg of waste out of landfill and preventing 665kg of CO2 emissions (that’s like growing 11 tree seedlings for 10 years!).

Friends of the Farm co-chair Jane Gravestock noted, ‘Each time we run a Repair Café, we look for areas to improve.  This time, we brought along an additional sewing machine so that people could do their repairs themselves.  And it worked!  One participant arrived, fixed something of their own, then kindly stayed to help the busy sewing volunteer team.

It’s not just about bringing something to be fixed.  Jane said, ‘We also encourage our skilled volunteers to show people how they can repair their own items, where this is practicable.  One local commented that she was shown how to darn a repair herself, thanks to our darner Yvonne

Jane emphasised, ‘It’s a real community effort here, with locals Mark and Joel Swords from Mark Swords Electrical, bike mechanic Luke Haitoua from Duke Cycles and knife sharpeners Celesté and Schulk Fourie of CSF Knives, all giving their time for free, as do all our volunteers.  We could not do it without them.

‘Local café Phnom Penh gives all our volunteers a free coffee or smoothie, to keep us going.  Friends of the Farm loves to be part of the repair café movement, which connects communities and brings people together.’

The usual children’s music session and Justice of the Peace services continued uninterrupted, as did issuing and returning library books. As always homemade cookies and hot drinks were available while people waited for their turn.

Friends of the Farm’s next Repair Café will be on Saturday 13 July 2024 at the Māngere Bridge Library from 10.00 am – 1.00 pm. 

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