‘Green Gather’ repair workshop at Mullingar Library

By now most of us will be familiar with the ‘sustainability’ mantra: ‘reduce, re-use, recycle’. To really add to the commitment, however, we can actually add a fourth ‘R’ to that list, though, for ‘repair’.

‘Sustainability through repair’ is the central theme for ‘Green Gather’, an upcoming event in Mullingar Library.

Running from 10.30am to 12.30pm on Saturday May 18, the event will include presentations and demonstrations to show how a lot of the things we discard and replace can be repaired.

A lot of the time a simple fix can restore an item to a usable condition and the only reason it ends up in the bin is a lack of knowledge on our part. This knowledge is a valuable commodity that we are in real danger of losing, as a society.

The act of repairing an item has tangible benefits – it can save you money and it’s more environmentally sound, but it also instils a genuine sense of satisfaction in a job well done. It can inspire the confidence to take on slightly bigger projects and a repaired item always has more character and will ‘belong’ to you in a sense that just going to a shop and buying it can never match.

Repaired items always have stories to tell, both in how they got damaged in the first place, and how they came to be repaired. This has been a part of human culture since we started making things, so it would be a pity to lose it.

This event will look specifically at repairs that are possible either for us to take on ourselves or that can be carried out by a local specialist.

It will specifically address repairs to soft toys, upholstery, clothing, and bicycles, through contributions from local businesses specialising in those areas. There will also be short presentations on other environmental issues such as food waste and biodiversity.

‘Green Gather’ is an initiative of the relatively new Mullingar Climate Action Network, supported by their partners in the Westmeath Environment and Climate Action Network and Westmeath County Libraries.