The Nature of the Work
By definition, a project working to transform culture operates in all areas of society: in the public, private and non-for-profit sectors; with organizations large and small; and with myriad socioeconomic and identity demographies. Our facilitating and networking efforts connect people within and across those demarcations, enabling the success of discrete projects and strengthening the broad-based, increasingly consolidated, trans-global repair movement.
The core components of our work are networking, sharing information, facilitating securing resources, and promoting repair as a social value.
The Culture of Repair Project is concerned with work in The East Bay, and is currently concentrating on initiatives in Oakland and Berkeley, CA.
Our focus on repair hatched in the spring of 2017. Plans are taking shape. Programs are being developed and implemented. There's possibility and promise in many quarters.
The Culture of Repair Project is ready to help East Bay teachers incorporate repair into existing classes and develop new courses and projects. We have relationships with organizations that have developed and are disseminating repair curriculum and project support to schools. We can also help secure small grants to establish, refine and prove concept.
The "maker spaces" more and more schools are establishing are particularly well suited for programs focused on repair - teaching skills and empowering students to "open it up and see what's there", and, more important: teaching young people the imperative to extend the life-span of the things they have.
We're in conversation with East Bay industrial arts non-profits about adding repair modules to existing classes, and/or developing new curriculum expressly about repair.
PUBLIC / PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS
We seek opportunities to collaborate with local municipalities, regional authorities, nonprofit organizations and businesses to implement projects supportive of repair. For example: We would like to see economic development programs cultivating vibrant networks of local independent repair shops.
Our work includes researching initiatives in other localities and bringing relevant ideas to the East Bay.
COMMUNITY REPAIR EVENTS
Folks who know how to fix things, getting together to help folks who don't, bringing broken things back to life. Along the way, the more important objective is accomplished: Raising people's awareness of the imperative of extending the lifespan of the things we have by fixing them rather than prematurely discarding and replacing them.
These gatherings are sweeping the globe, from the over 1450 Repair Cafés around the world affiliated with Amsterdam's Repair Café Foundation, to Fixit Clinic's 250-plus events nationwide, to London-based Restart Project's dozens of "Restart Parties" across the UK and the continent, to many, many stand-alone initiatives, such as Chicago's Community Glue Workshop, Portland's Repair PDX and Brooklyn's Fixers' Collective.
With Transition Berkeley we're helping organize Repair Cafés — some folks will bring broken things, others will bring know-how and tools, and yet others will bring coffee, bagels and fruit. Repair Cafés aren't free repair services, they're about neighbors helping each other out, getting to know each other, and learning how to squeeze more life out of the things we already have.
Details → Community Repair Events
With Berkeley Public Library, we're also helping organize Fixit Clinics. Focusing on empowering people through knowledge and experience, Fixit Coaches help participants repair their own things. "Fixit Clinic conveys basic disassembly, troubleshooting, and repair skills using peoples' own broken things as the vehicle. By sharing these skills while transferring them to others we teach critical thinking through the lens of our relationship to consumption and sustainability. We strive to demystify science and technology so that we can ultimately make better policy choices as a society."
Details → Community Repair Events
We intend to help help establish an entity that will organize ongoing Community Repair Events in The East Bay, ultimately independent of The Culture of Repair Project. That group's home and the flavor and format of events will emerge as we work with our partners hosting events, researching resources, and discerning the needs of The East Bay's many communities. Details → our vision.
The Culture of Repair Project is aligned with state, national and international bodies working to promote an awareness of the value of repair, to develop access to repair resources, and to reduce and eliminate obstacles to repair.
Right to Repair legislation was introduced in Sacramento in 2018. It was an important beginning of the conversation in California. Text of the bill.