Recently, the Cambridgeshire Repair Café Network team were jubilant at hitting their goal to raise £10,000 to help expand local repair cafes, community events where volunteers come together to help fix items for free.
The campaign saw strong community support, with 65 people donating to the week-long fundraiser. In the end it was local engineering and design consultancy 42 Technology who stepped up to ensure the campaign met its goal. In total the group raised £11,527 for their cause.
Alana Sinclair, Manager at Cambridge Carbon Footprint which hosts the Cambridgeshire Repair Café Network said “We’re absolutely thrilled to have met and exceeded our goal. The donations we’ve received will mean we’re able to do so much more to help local repair cafes.”
“It’s also been a huge boost to see just how much interest there has been in the campaign, from both the community and local business. People can really see the benefits repair cafes provide, bringing people together to do something positive for the community and the environment.”
“People naturally hate waste and electronic waste is a big problem, especially in the UK where we have the second highest rate of electronic waste in the world. This week the EU has adopted a position to support one common charger for electronic devices. We need measures like this here, that reduce waste and make it easier for items to be repaired.”
“The support for our campaign has been phenomenal. In this last week we’ve had even more groups come forward asking for help to get a repair cafe started in their local area. The donations we’ve received will mean we’re able to help them and ensure that repair cafes in our region continue to thrive and grow.”
Jon Spratley, CEO at 42T said: “When the opportunity arose to assist the Cambridgeshire Repair Café Network to reach their fundraising aim, we didn’t hesitate to help them, as sustainability runs through the core of our business.”
“We view it as a responsibility to not only help our clients, who are often multinational manufacturers, to develop excellent products, but also ones that will last and be more sustainable. We also believe that reducing waste, the environmental impact and precious resources through repairing items rather than allowing them to go to landfill dovetails with our overall business philosophy and values.”
“Of course, as engineers we like to have fun tinkering with things and fixing things in our spare time too. We are proud that our head of electronics and software, Paul Bearpark, already takes an active role in running a Repair Café.”
Manufacturing and extracting materials, including those used to create new products, is responsible for up to 50% of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. Extending the lifetime of the EU’s stock of mobile phones by five years would save almost 10 million tonnes of emissions (CO2eq) annually by 2030. This is equivalent to taking 5 million cars off the roads for a year. Repair Cafes enable communities to work together to reduce some of those emissions.
Already the Cambridgeshire Repair Café Network has seen big successes in expanding access to repair cafes across the region. Since 2016 they’ve grown the network from just 2 local repair cafes to over 26. Repair cafes will fix items such as small appliances, laptops, toys, clothes, and jewellery and are free to attend.
The Network has events scheduled across the county in the coming months. Please visit cambridgecarbonfootprint.org/repaircafes for more details and how to book.
The image above shows Paul Bearpark,head of electronics and software at 42T, carrying out some helpful repairs at one of the Waterbeach Repair Cafes. Photo credit: Urban&Civic/Tim George.