Reusing and Renewing

Reusing and Renewing

As I mentioned in the State of our County address earlier this month the state of our county is healthy, energized and invigorated. We are ready and eager to meet the coming year and thereafter.

One of the new ways we are striving to meet our goals is through the Rockland Intergenerational Initiative. It’s a joint effort of the Youth Bureau, Office for the Aging and the County Solid Waste Authority to bring our young people and senior mentors together.

Working with our local Villages and Towns Rockland will be hosting what we’ve termed a “Repair Café.” We aim to transform our throw away economy one item at a time, by reducing how much goes into the waste stream.

Unfortunately, the ability to fix or repair items is becoming a lost art. These days there’s an abundance of inexpensive items we can get easily at convenience stores, malls and online. It’s easier to buy new than repair the old. But learning to repair has many benefits to you, the environment and your surrounding community.

Mentors from the Office of the Aging will come together and work with young people from the Rockland Youth Bureau. The benefits of this partnership are extensive and transformational; preserving repair know-how skills by passing them on to the younger generation; showing the people who possess this knowledge that they are valued; feeding curiosity about “the way things work” and teaching the younger generation respect for our seniors. All while fostering a sense of community, sustainability and resilience.

If you’re wondering why you would want to attend a “Repair Café,” it’s simple; you can bring your broken items from home; work with a volunteer to have them repaired and learn how to do it yourself if they break again. Even if you don’t have anything that needs repair you can stop in to assist in repairs, or just watch and learn.

This is just another example of how Rockland is doing things a little differently; thinking outside the box to improve the lives of all our residents. I ask that you join me in this important initiative because only by working together can we complete the renaissance that we have begun in this county.

This first “Repair Café” is planned for this spring in Nyack thanks to the help of Nyack Mayor Don Hammond and the Nyack Village Board. I want to thank them for that. We will be planning more of these events as the year goes on and I will keep you posted on how you can get involved and get your items fixed!

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