How to run a Restart Party

The Restart Projects-5-small

A Restart Party is a free community event where volunteers help people fix their own broken electronics, to save them from waste and change our relationship with electronics.

We’re thrilled that people respond so positively to our Restart Parties and our idea. We’ve put our hearts into this Project since the very beginning, and we would love for people to spread it far and wide. And we’d love to help. We’ve set up an online group for those who would like to host their own events.If you would like support, and can commit to hosting a Restart Party in your community, we encourage you to join.

To throw a Restart Party, we ask that you stick to a couple of simple guidelines.

  • Restart Parties are free to the public, although a donation can be suggested to cover cost of hiring a venue / paying for basic tools and supplies
  • Restart Parties are a collaborative learning process, not a “free repair”: we are not competing with professional technicians by offering a better deal.
  • The Restart Project is not liable for events not directly organised by us. If uninsured, please work in partnership with a group that is. We offer more information on safety and risk in our group for hosts.
  • Communicate your Restart Party to The Restart Project in advance so that we can add it to our calendar and help spread the word. Events should be documented with photos and some brief feedback to us, so we can share.

How to run a great Restart Party

  • They are called parties for a reason: friendly, with a few snacks and beverages to share, and possibly some good music playing while people learn.
  • Events require a minimum of 3/4 committed repair volunteers – called Restarters – guaranteeing they’ll be there for the whole length of the event.
  • One person should be the host – in charge of welcoming participants and organising a “waiting list” with descriptions of the problem and conducting initial troubleshooting.
  • The maximum duration of each individual troubleshooting/repair depends on how long the waiting list is. 30 min/person might be sensible if many people are attending, although it might not be sufficient when opening a computer.
  • Skill-sharing and empowerment are absolutely essential: they are just as important as a Restarter’s ability to fix something. Repairs should be always done together, explaining the steps.
  • Participation of local repair professionals is encouraged: by contributing, they can also promote their own activities. But any referral for complicated repairs to professional repairers is done individually, not on behalf of The Restart Project.
  • We recommend that events are publicised across existing local green networks and associations, for instance Freecycle groups, Transition Towns and the likes. As much as we like social media, don’t forget about email lists.