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GET YOUR FIX: Bring your broken items to the Repair Café at JUMP

Posted at 4:19 PM, Apr 17, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-17 22:52:22-04

BOISE, Idaho — The Repair Café is a free community event where people can bring in one household item per person to be fixed by volunteers. The event is on Thursday, April 18th from 4-7 pm at JUMP in Downtown Boise.

  • Volunteer fixers will be ready to fix a variety of items, a list of repairable items can be found here.
  • The event is part of the City of Boise's Reduce & Reuse Program which aims to reduce waste and keep products in use.

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story.)

*Ding Ding*

The sound of a bell ringing at The Repair Café means a volunteer like Mark Bowen fixed a broken item.

“I am a volunteer fixer. I’ve been fixing things I think pretty much my whole life,” says Bowen.

Mark has been interested in learning how things work since he was a kid

“I took my mother's toaster apart and was never able to fix it so maybe I learned from that, well if I’m gonna take something apart I should probably be able to put it back together,” says Bowen.

Nowadays, he is so good at taking things apart and putting them back together, he uses his skills for the greater good.

“I just enjoy fixing things for people they’re so appreciative of something that I think comes easy to me,” says Bowen.

The Repair Café is a free community event where people can bring in one household item per person… in need of repairs.

Catherine Milner works for the City of Boise on their Curb It team.

“It’s just as much about preventing waste as it is about sharing skills, sharing stories, and being in a community space together,” says Milner.

She tells me the event offers a unique opportunity to bring the community together.

“Our participants get to observe the repairers doing their work, they get to kind of see the mindset that repairers put into fixing an item… over 50% of people said that they feel more confident in fixing their own things at home now thanks to this event,” says Milner.

JUMP Senior Programs Manager Dan Beyer says his experiences from last year's Repair Cafés were nothing but positive.

“I love it when people bring things like you know their old stuffed animals or backpacks that they cherish… just handing back that fixed item. It’s just the most amazing experience to see somebody get something that they cared about for so long fixed”

As for Mark, he’ll be ready on Thursday to start fixing.

“Find your favorite keepsake that’s broken and bring it in and don’t throw it away. We’ll see if we can fix it,” says Bowen.