Host a Repair Café in Your Library


Person with overalls and glasses cleaning an electrical component in a workshop.

Learn how your library can host a Repair Café (or fixit-clinic, fixit-fair, or other community repair event). Public libraries and Repair Cafés are natural allies and together can foster a culture of repair, reuse, and resourcefulness while strengthening community.

In this webinar you'll learn what a Repair Café is and how to start one, including recruiting volunteers, ensuring you have necessary supplies, and promoting and managing your event. The presenters will also share insights, strategies, and best practices for establishing and nurturing a Repair Café in your library, using our own events to demonstrate what to do (and what not to do!).

Learning Outcomes

At the conclusion of this webinar, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the history of Repair Cafés;
  • Gather the resources needed to hold a Repair Café; and
  • Host their own Repair Café.

Who Should Attend

This webinar is intended for all public library staff who develop or offer programs.


Photo of Larissa BrookesLarissa Brookes (she/her) is a librarian at the Ridgewood Public Library in Ridgewood, NJ. She has hosted the Ridgewood Repair Café since 2018, first at the local high school and ever since at the public library. Larissa cofounded Repair Café Garden State, a group dedicated to fostering the New Jersey Repair Café movement. She is also president of the NJ Library Association Sustainability and Resilience Section and a member of the Sustainability Round Table Public Advocacy & Awareness Committee.


Photo of Gabrielle GriffisGabrielle Griffis (she/her) works as a youth services librarian at Brewster Ladies' Library in Brewster, MA. She has been coordinating and advocating for repair events in libraries since 2018. Her writing on this topic appears in Repair Revolution: How Fixers are Transforming Our Throwaway Culture, Libraries and Sustainability: Programs and Practices for Community Impact, and 25 Ready-to-Use Sustainable Living Library Programs, as well as How Public Libraries Build Sustainable Communities in the 21st Century.  She is a co-founder and leading member of the Blue Marble Librarians, a Massachusetts-based group of librarians who work on helping libraries create climate resilience in their communities. Learn more at


Photo of Elizabeth KnightElizabeth Knight (she/her) is a long-time sustainability activist, community organizer, and author, having co-written Repair Revolution: How Fixers Are Transforming Our Throwaway Culture with her fellow sustainability and repair advocate, the late John Wackman. In 2016, Elizabeth started Orange County New York's first Repair Café, which serves people from New York and New Jersey. She moved to Jersey City in 2023 and, of course, promptly started the Jersey City Repair Café, which meets bimonthly. Elizabeth is a frequent speaker on the repair movement and was interviewed on NBC's TODAY in April, when the morning show hosted a massive Repair Café in Rockefeller Center.


Important Registration Information

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This live webinar will be captioned in English (United States). Zoom desktop client or mobile app is required to access captions.

Attendees using screen readers are advised to turn off speech prior to joining the Zoom event because PLA webinars make extensive use of chat functionality. Attendees who find chat distracting may wish to disable it in the Zoom event, as PLA moderators will verbally highlight important topics raised in chat and chat transcripts will be provided post-webinar.

If you have a physical or communication need that may affect your participation in this webinar, please contact us at or 800-545-2433 ext. 5PLA (5752) at least two weeks prior to the webinar. Without prior notification of need, we may not be able to provide appropriate accommodations for the live event.

Archived Recording

If you're unable to attend this live webinar, an archived recording will be available to all registrants typically within 1–3 business of the live event. Access to closed captions will be provided in the webinar recording.

Tech Requirements

This webinar will be presented using the Zoom platform. Please review Zoom technical requirements and support information, and test your connection.

Once you've joined the webinar, there are two ways to connect your audio: via computer (VoIP) or via telephone. No microphone is required. PLA works with its webinar platform provider to assure the highest quality audio is being delivered to attendees. However, variables over which PLA has no control—such as the speed of your Internet connection or traffic on your local network—can affect the end quality of the webinar audio delivered by your computer. Each webinar’s audio is also available by telephone via a toll number, so we recommend you have access to a long-distance enabled phone as a backup in case you experience audio issues with VoIP. If you do encounter any problems during the webinar, you will receive a link to its archived recording within a week of the live event and can review anything you missed.


This webinar is presented by the Public Library Association (PLA), a division of the American Library Association (ALA).

Questions about this webinar? Please contact us at or 800-545-2433 ext. 5PLA (5752).

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