The Community Action Groups (CAG) Devon project supports twenty-four groups located in Mid Devon and Teignbridge, operating various projects such as community fridges, repair cafés, and beach cleans.
The project’s aim is to create a more sustainable future by empowering community groups to take action. The economic and environmental impact of these groups can be measured through gathering data and general number crunching, but what about the wider impacts? How do we gain a better understanding of the impacts on volunteers and communities? What better way than to ask volunteers themselves.
We’re sharing stories collected from seven CAG volunteers as they describe their experiences of volunteering in their local community.
Today’s story belongs to Angie who volunteers with Sidmouth Repair Café.
It all started with the enticing smell of bacon and hot coffee while out in Exmouth! After tracking it down, Angie stumbled upon a local repair café in full swing at the nearby church hall. The place was bustling with action – local residents bringing items to be fixed, volunteers carrying out repairs and lots of chit chat over tea and cake. Angie loved the idea of holding an event to bring the community together and reduce waste at the same time so, with the help of CAG Devon and a few other like minded people, she brought it to Sidmouth.
Since then, Sidmouth Repair Café has gone from strength to strength. The benefits it brings to the community are numerous and varied. Angie has seen young people take an interest in learning new skills, blossoming under the tutelage of more experienced volunteers. Volunteers enjoy putting their skills to good use and sharing them with others. The café is a place where people connect, relax, chat and share. For Angie, it’s heart-warming and fulfilling…and there’s always cake!
If you’re interested in improving your local community and can spare an hour or two, why not connect with your local group? Groups in Mid Devon and Teignbridge can benefit from CAG Devon support but there are plenty of useful resources for groups in other areas, just like Sidmouth Repair Café. Visit CAG Devon or contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Sidmouth Repair Café is one of many community organisations in Devon supported by CAG Devon, a project funded by Devon County Council.