The Repair Shed
Community Action Dacorum currently manages over 10 projects working to improve the local community, including Support4Dacorum, the project that runs the Volunteer Centre. One of the projects is the Repair Shed which is part of a wider international movement developing Sheds as a vehicle for connecting older men to like-minded people and community through rewarding, often physical, activity.
Sheds are community spaces where people can come together to take part in practical skills and activities. They are designed to be run by the members and provide opportunities to share tools, resources, skills and a cuppa in order to create, learn and develop social networks. Recycling and repurposing often play a role and Sheds are vibrant community workshops where a huge range of things are created for personal and community use. Whilst this shed is called The Repair Shed, they do much more than just repair. They make, mend and learn which are the three key activities of any shed.
The vision of the Repair Shed is to be an environmental enterprise that is financially self-sustaining by making, mending and selling products and services as appropriate. Members aim to spend approximately a third of their time on income generation through making items for sale and mending items that would otherwise go to the landfill, a third of their time on community projects and a third of their time on members’ personal projects.
Membership of the Repair Shed is varied but a typical member is likely to be a man aged 50+, with a practical mind and in interest in mending, making and learning. Ideally they will have relatively low support needs but maybe getting over personal difficulties and looking for a friendly set-up to do so. The Repair Shed welcomes members who can put in at least as much as they get out. You do not need to be an ‘expert’ in anything, but are expected to be reasonably practically minded and interested in doing things with your hands. Membership of the Repair Shed is not exclusively male and currently has several female members.
For more information on the Repair Shed, you can go to Community Action Dacorum’s website