So, you are the surprise guest expected today said Barnd at the cycle repair workstation.
This repair workshop organized today (16th April ,2014)at Cafe Karton is one of the repair cafes in Bremen(Germany) which started 2 years ago as a college project and now carried forward as a professional workshop explained Justus , one of the organizers. It is organized onceand on 3rd Saturdays of the month. In fact , there are 2 other repair cafes and one of them charges for registration. "We are careful not to clash dates with them" informs Justus.
How does this one work?
"We design our own posters and will evolve our own processes as per the experience at the workshop and depends on how it grows. As far as the documentation is concerned we are recording the figures carefully in the system and we will figure out later how to interpret it" informs Max another organizer.
"Today's workshop has stations ie., Personal Computer, Clothes, Electronics, and Bicycles. Since morning about 14 visitors have come for Repairs" says Kalle another organizer. Electronics seems to have a long queue of Repairs to be done.
It is interesting to note that in such a span of time they have been able to gather a very impressive team of repair volunteers who contribute their services purely for the love of it. The sewing workstation is managed by Maxie, a student and a researcher in environmental psychology. She had learned stitching from her mother and carries her sewing machine & tool box to the cafe, she lives close by. So how did she get involved? She replies, that she came to get her lamp repaired and was convinced of the idea so much so, that decided to volunteer for it. Today since morning she is able to do patches for jeans and now, as the afternoon wore on she was overwhelmed with more clothes coming for repair.
Barnd who is managing the cycle workstation is a librarian by profession and learnt cycle repairing all by himself. Learning by doing...He says he has documented every step of learning to repair in a book format. He is quick to observe that, you can pay 10 times more for a high-end cycle than a normal cycle but quality will not be guaranteed at 10 times better. This is so true for a consumer items in present times.The electric workstation was managed by Thomas who is an Electrical engineer and a researcher in the university. He pursues repairing as his favourite pass time. In fact he has kept an array of spares for repairs at the workshop. He gives them for free.
Last but definitely not the least the manager of the Cafe Karton, Timo is passionate about serving community and thus gives his space for various community based activities like Repair Cafe, Dancing classes and teaching classes for differently- abled People. So guys next time you are at Bremen don't forget to visit this Cafe on Am Diech Street just by the river.
I am convinced that repair cafes are growing to be one of the powerful movements of our times, so please come forward and donate for any repair cafe near you and support them to sustain it ..
Repair if you care for the world.
(Disclaimer- the views expressed in this article are personal views only)