Repair & Share Fair

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Catalyst Network of Communities presents its second Repair & Share Fair, offering free neighborly repair, free tacos, and free workshops to the community on Saturday, February 25, 2017. These events will take place quarterly in four Whittier neighborhoods.

At the Repair & Share Fairs, handy neighbors volunteer to fix clothing, toys, appliances, small furniture, bikes, and more. The Fair also features a pop-up Whittier Free Store; Kids Book Swap L.A.; a creative reuse art activity; a civil discourse workshop; 3D printer demonstrations for appliance repair; and, free tacos.

Free tacos are provided by event sponsor Athens Services. 

The Whittier Free Store - like a consignment shop, but the items are free - accepts donations of items in good condition and offers those items to the community. In 2017, surplus goods collected by the Free Store are being transformed by the future worker owned enterprise Cooperativa Artesanal into saleable goods in the Artisan Work Lab, a small business incubator, artisan/artist tool library, and co-work studio. 

Cooperativa Artesanal artist-owned cooperative will host an assemblage art activity, inviting guests to transform found objects and other materials from the Whittier Free Store into art.

Kids Book Swap LA is a homegrown, grassroots project to promote literacy in school-age children by providing a venue and platform for parents to read to their kids; for children to become involved in building their own personal libraries at home; and, to provide books to those families with limited access to educational materials.

Deezmaker 3D Printers & Makerspace (San Dimas, CA) will host 3D printer demonstrations at the Fair that show how missing and broken parts of appliances and toys can be replaced, using a 3D printer. The grant-funded 3D printer is now available by appointment at the Whittier Free Store, to be used for saving items from the landfill.

Catalyst is the sole recipient of the GriffinHarte Foundation’s 2016-17 civil discourse grant, which funds the quarterly Fair’s civil discourse workshops, Communicating with the "Other". This innovative approach to community repair is intended to help restore civility and neighborly respect in a world where discourse is undermined by divisive issues. The workshop uses civil discourse principles to address hot button issues to help us envision our neighborhood’s future together. “The Fairs aren’t just about fixing broken objects,” Catalyst Regional Director Megan Hobza says. “Community repair is about ending throwaway culture and healing our divided community. A better world is possible when we come together and share our stuff and ourselves.”

The February 25th Repair & Share Fair is made possible by support from Athens Services.  Athens is a local, family-owned owned recycling and solid waste services company that began providing services in the City of Whittier west of Ocean View Avenue on July 1, 2016. Jessica Aldridge, Sustainability Manager, says “As the largest recycling company in the region, Athens is proud to support the Whittier Free Store and the Repair & Share Fair. Reducing, reusing and recycling are cornerstones of our business and the work of local artists to reuse goods and sustain their life cycle is critical to preserving our natural resources.”

The Repair & Share Fair is also made possible by a partnership with Boys & Girls Club of Whittier (BGCW), which provides a world-class Club Experience that assures success is within reach of every young person that enters its doors, with all members on track to graduate from high school with a plan for the future, demonstrating good character and citizenship, and living a healthy lifestyle. BGCW hosts the February 25th Fair at its main clubhouse in Uptown Whittier. 

The Repair & Share Fair is scheduled for Saturday, February 25, 2017, at Boys & Girls Club of Whittier, located at 7905 Greenleaf Avenue, Whittier, CA 90602. 

Photos by Linda Abbot Photography