How to run a repair event

Welcome to the Restart Party Kit! (part 2)

Running a repair event can seem daunting, so we’ve put together this kit full of information, resources and guidance on how to make your event a success.


1. Host a repair event in your community
2. How to run a repair event (you are here)
3. Measuring the impact of your event
4. Safety & Managing Risk at your event

Recipe for a Restart Party

a Restart Party in action

Serves 30 – 40 people

Prep Time:

  • Organizing a venue (including location scouting) – 3 hours
  • Recruiting and publicizing – 2 hours

Fixing Time:

  • 3 Hours (no new fixes during the last hour)


  1. Set up the space to maximize flow of people, and interaction between volunteers and participants.

  2. Hosts greet people, ask questions about a device to determine what is wrong, and check in repairs on a public waiting list.

  3. Hosts match repairs with volunteers with the right skills, and volunteers set up and begin repairing. Where possible, cluster repairs, for example, all mobiles in one area.

  4. While waiting, people snack, chat, or learn more from printed materials. It helps to provide a waiting space.


  • A good venue (see below)
  • Basic tools
  • Extension leads
  • Masking tape for extension leads
  • A waiting list (poster / whiteboard)
  • Wayfinding signs
  • 3-4 Restarter volunteers
  • 2 Party hosts
  • Name tags or name badges
  • Tea, coffee, drinks and snacks


  • 5 large tables and chairs
  • Adequate power outlets
  • Decent lighting
  • WiFi or mobile internet access
  • Accessibility
  • Access to toilet

Tools & Supplies

Restarters in London have compiled a list of suggested tools and supplies on the Restart Wiki. You do not need to have everything on the list to conduct a successful Restart Party, but every bit helps. This is very much a work in progress: if you have additional suggestions, please get in touch.

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Publicising your event

Where to promote your event

Email. People who are active in their communities still very much use email lists to connect. Try to get your event announced on as many relevant email lists as possible: local or green or tech lists.

Simple black and white posters or flyers are surprisingly effective. Be sure to ask to display these in shops, libraries, and other public spaces in your local community. You can also put flyers through peoples front doors in the area around your venue.

List your event on websites such as your own, the venue’s, the Restart Project’s. Some sort of web presence is pretty critical these days to give people confidence that the event is ‘actually happening’.

Social media is a cheap and easy option. Many groups advertise their events on event platforms such as Meetup, Facebook, or other platforms. To start out, email lists and posters are the way to go and get lots of engagement from local communities.

Mainstream or local media could be helpful, you might consider sending around a press release.

Visual Identity

We call ourselves The Restart Project, and our wish is to see the Restart Party proliferate. Already existing organisations will take on Restart Parties as activities in their communities and recruit volunteers for these events called Restarters.

We are NOT promoting the establishment of new Restart Project chapters, franchises or local NGOs.

Good example of party poster (Credit: Alexandra Charlemagne, of Seed Grow Change)

Do’s and Don’t’s

DO call your event a Restart Party and use this logo on your banner or poster

DO indicate which local organisations are hosting and sponsoring (in your posters and banners)

DO use Patua One, a free font download

DO NOT imply your event is run by the Restart Project

DO NOT use our logo on its own ran- domly, or add to it

DO NOTsquash the logo or change its colour

Local identity

You will find that some people self-identify as Restarters, and that you need a pool of Restarters to power a Restart Party, or to power a local repair cafe. We provide some visual elements to recruit and motivate Restarters online and in real life.

Use these to recruit people, including on social media and online. You can also include your location…

Use these as avatars on social media
You can pick your favorite colour and use as profile photo on social networks.

If you’d like your own web address or redirect, please choose something like
(Please do not suggest that you are a franchise or chapter of The Restart Project by choosing something like: or

Files for download

We have gathered all the communication material you will need to run your Restart Party in a downloadable bundle. Inside you will find the following:

  1. Registration sign
  2. Restart lounge sign
  3. Fixing table sign
  4. Wayfinding poster
  5. Restart Party rules
  6. Event promo poster

Recruiting volunteers

Be a Restarter!

Synonyms: repairer, fixer
n. A person who likes helping people learn how to fix broken electronics or electricals – anything with a battery or that plugs in – with a few exceptions, like microwaves.

Restarters have diverse skills. Some help with basic electrical fixing involving changing fuses and plugs. Others deal with software issues on laptops and mobiles. Yet others take on intricate electronics repairs involving soldering.

And still others will help to facilitate these repairs, welcoming people, finding chairs, facilitating conversation, and helping the event to run smoothly.

What unites Restarters is the love of a repair challenge and their collaborative approach, they love to share skills.

Meet some of our Restarters and Restart Party Hosts.

Finding your first volunteers

People often get anxious about the number of Restarters needed to host an event. With three or four volunteers, we encourage groups to go ahead and schedule an event.

You can run your first event event if your initial volunteers can only cover limited skills. More Restarters will appear. If you host it, they will come! Put in the extra effort to make your volunteers happy and you will have no problem recruiting more.

Building a group of local volunteers is great for the sustainability of your events. We recommend setting up a Volunteer Welcome Session, a 30-60 min induction which gives potential volunteers a chance to find out what becoming a Restarter its all about how to get involved. Set this up as a separate event on whichever website or platform you are using to advertise so this its clear this is for people who want to volunteer. Below is a plan for how to run your own welcome session.

Volunteer Welcome Session

Duration: 30-60mins (just prior to a Restart Party)


Potential volunteers should:

  • Feel a part of a larger community, and know how to get in contact with everyone
  • Understand the basic workings of a Restart party, including role of host, role of the Restarter, safety, and logging data
  • Understand community values: friendliness, collaborative learning, radical openness


  • Coloured stickers for ice-breaker game
  • Printed copies of the safety guidelines and volunteer handbook
  • Invite another Restarter to co-facilitate


Facilitator(s) introduce themselves

Ice-breaker game [5 mins]
As people arrive take a sticker based on confidence with electrical repair:

  • Green: What’s a fuse?
  • Yellow: I dabble in electrical repair
  • Red: I’m a basically a pro
    Go-round the group introducing yourselves and one thing about your electronic repair history i.e. ‘I’m Ellie and I once fixed a toaster with spoke’, ‘I’m Paul and this is my first fixing experience’.

What is Restart? [2 mins]
We are consuming too much, too fast and feeling frustrated, lets fix our relationship with electronics! The Restart Project aims to move beyond throw-away economy through pop-up community repair events.

The Restarter community [3 mins]

  • There are 2 key roles which Restarters play: party hosts and fixers
  • What to expect: new Restarters buddy-up with more experienced fixers for their first few events to build skill and confidence; everyone has different weaknesses and strengths, stay within your comfort zone; there are no stupid questions, when we don’t ask we deny ourselves the opportunity to learn - so ask questions of other Restarters
  • We are a global community with big ambitions, to fully participate in join the Restart ‘Talk’ forum

Community values [7 mins]
Explain the community values with particular focus on:

We do-it-together:
Enabling people to participate in the repair of their own devises is one of the radical and unique things community repair events.

You could use a role play to explore how to engage people in repair.

Facilitator 1 plays an over-zealous fixer

Facilitator 2 plays an under-confident attendee not taking part in repair

Play out a scene and then ask how could have gone differently? How could you involve people in repairs?

Basic Restart Party safety [5 mins]
Have a copy of the Safety Guidelines call out each of the following asking them to respond with a way to minimise risk i.e. you say ‘drinks’, they call-back ‘not near electricity’.

  • Extension leads
  • Soldering
  • Fire
  • Knives
  • Prying on screens
  • Drinks
  • Children

Working with electricity [8 mins]
Explain the following points from the Safety Guidelines:

  • There is a point person for tech/ safety questions at each event - they should be identified to all Restarters
  • Always ask a question about safety if you have one
  • Nobody should work outside their comfort-zone
  • There is a distinction between mains and battery-powered devices (go through the few concerns about these)
  • Mains devices:
  • PAT testing - we do this before and after working on a device at a Restart Party
  • Live testing (i.e. testing a mains device whilst disassembled) - this is only done in pairs and with consent from safety point person
  • Signing up to the safety guidelines is a way of “joining” and getting insured individually under our “employers insurance” if you adhere to them - so please do read them!

Wrap up [2mins]

  • Any questions?
  • Hand out safety guideline sheets: make sure you collect signed copied from all new volunteers
  • Buddy up volunteers with experienced fixers

If you have a longer time-slot you could introduce some basic repair skills such as how to use a multimeter or PAT tester; talk about data capture for the Fixometer; or allow more time for questions.

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