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Abbey People

Abbey People

Non-profit or charity


We are a vibrant community charity in the Abbey Ward of Cambridge, improving the lives and wellbeing of Abbey residents. We do this through targeted community projects, provision of general support ...

Community & familyEducationNature & sustainability
Repair Cafe – Repairer

Repair Cafe – Repairer

Event · 5 Jul, 15:30 - 19:30
East Barnwell Community Centre, Cambridge CB5 8RS, UK
Community & familyEducationNature & sustainability
Applications closing in a month.
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Do you enjoy fixing things? Repair Cafes are community events that match people who need stuff fixed with people who like fixing things.

Detailed description

Without volunteers we cannot run this event. Each volunteer will make the event look, run and feel better. Abbey People’s next Repair Cafe is on Friday 5th July at the Museum of Technology and we hope to hold more Repair Cafes in the future. There’s a real ‘can do’ atmosphere at Repair Cafes – it’s good to tackle practical problems in a way that can make a real difference and see the smiles on people’s faces.

Why repair?

A staggering 44.7 million metric tonnes e-waste were generated globally in 2016. This is equal in weight to almost 4,500 Eiffel Towers.

Repair Cafes are completely non-commercial. There are no promises and no guarantees, but if something can be saved the repairers will do everything they can.

What is this role all about?

Repairers assess and repair where possible broken or faulty items brought to the event.

Tasks may include:

  • Helping set up and pull down the event
  • Setting up own workstation safely
  • Welcoming people who’ve brought their items to be fixed – we call them ‘repairees’ – and talking them through the fault and its repair
  • Involving them in the repair if safe
  • Giving advice on next steps if repair can’t be completed
  • Keeping a record of items’ repair progress, including any advice given
  • Supporting other repairers with advice if needed, including mentoring new repairers
  • Helping ensure Repair Cafe toolkit is ready for next Repair Cafe

There’s a physical, social and admin side to events:

  • Physical – as a repair volunteer, your main focus will be practical attention to the item brought to you, but you might be asked to help with setting-up and taking-down of stalls/info, putting out and stacking chairs and tables, decorating the room with bunting etc
  • Social – you’ll be chatting to repairees, helping them to understand why their item isn’t working as it should, and engaging them in the repair process as much as possible, where safe. You’ll also be chatting to other repairers, asking experienced repairers for tips and picking up new skills.
  • Administration – we’ll ask you to keep a log of all the items you get to work on, whether they are fixed or not. This provides us with invaluable data. We will use it to discourage manufacturers from deliberately making things that are difficult to fix.

What skills do I need?

We need people who are:

  • Punctual
  • Flexible, willing to jump in and help with whatever they can
  • Friendly.

Is there any training or support available?

  • There will be a briefing for volunteers at the start of the Repair Cafe.
  • You’ll be sent the Risk Assessment in advance.
  • There will be a member of staff and experienced volunteers to help you.
  • The event, venue and volunteers are covered by Cambridge Carbon Footprint and Abbey People’s insurance policy.

You really don’t need to be an expert repairer to join us but you probably have an idea of the sort of things you’re happiest working with. If you need advice, there will always be someone to ask.

What we will provide to volunteers

🤝 Extra support

Getting there

Applications closing in a month.
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About Abbey People

We are a vibrant community charity in the Abbey Ward of Cambridge, improving the lives and wellbeing of Abbey residents. We do this through targeted community projects, provision of general support such as a community Food Hub, supporting access to education and employment, projects to improve the environment, and by developing a culture of volunteering in the community.