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St. John’s Tool Library celebrates one-year anniversary, giving away 30 memberships

St. John’s Tool Library executive director Ian Froude displays one of the 30 membership cards he is hoping to give away to kick off 2019.
St. John’s Tool Library executive director Ian Froude displays one of the 30 membership cards he is hoping to give away to kick off 2019. - Sam McNeish

The holiday season is a time for people to give of themselves in order to help others.
But why stop there?

The St. John’s Tool Library just celebrated its one year anniversary, has been helping people complete a variety of projects and is now taking it one step further to help additional people who may need a helping hand now, and into the future.
“We are committed to providing 30 free tool library memberships to families in need in our community,” Tool Library executive director Ian Froude said.

“Every $50 donation provides a year-long membership. You can help us support our community by donating here: www.stjohnstoollibrary.ca/make-a-donation,” he added.

With more than 1,400 tools in its inventory, the St. John’s Tool Library is a great place for people in the community to get a tool to easily help them complete almost any and all projects in their homes. Ian Froude, executive director of the Tool Library showcases the organization’s T-shirt in front of a bench full of power tools available at the location. — Sam McNeish
With more than 1,400 tools in its inventory, the St. John’s Tool Library is a great place for people in the community to get a tool to easily help them complete almost any and all projects in their homes. Ian Froude, executive director of the Tool Library showcases the organization’s T-shirt in front of a bench full of power tools available at the location. — Sam McNeish

Froude said about $1,000 has been generated so far to fund these memberships and he hopes the good people of the community will be generous through the holidays and beyond to keep this project growing.
The St. John’s Tool Library reached nearly 200 members who borrowed from its inventory of more than 1,400 hand and power tools.

In total, members borrowed 3,421 items through 2018 that allowed members to do home renovation and maintenance, furniture building, gardening and more.
“The tool library prides itself as being an inexpensive way to help people do a diversity of projects, and a way to reduce waste, reducing our community’s environmental impact,” Froude said.
“Through tool lending and the many workshops held throughout 2018, our members and our community are gaining skills, doing more projects, and becoming more resilient,” he added.

These cafés were a community meeting place where people brought their broken items to get them fixed. With the guidance of a repair coach, participants took part in the fixing of their item, gaining hands-on experience and knowledge. Among the items fixed, were small household appliances, electronics, furniture, clothing and textiles, toys, and in partnership with the group Ordinary Spokes, bicycles.
He said there were people that joined the Tool Library who had small projects around their house they wanted to do themselves or couldn’t afford to hire someone to complete the work.

In addition, members put their skills to work to help other organizations in the community.

“We were part of the Farmer’s Market project this year. That is something we were proud of,’’ Froude said.
“We paired with a number of organizations like the Rabbittown Community Centre, to build the benches  to be used there, using our own tools,’’ he added.
He said there were people that joined the Tool Library who had small projects around their house they wanted to do themselves or couldn’t afford to hire someone to complete the work.
By being part of the Tool Library, they were able to work peer to peer, discuss the project, get explanations of how and why they should do it, and then go and do it … using the more than 1,400 tools available through the library. ... And save money at the same time.
The education component is not lost on Froude who said he loves seeing people teach each other how to do a project. Those projects could be something small to get them started and he knows of two members who are now building a dining room table and a shed respectively.

The Tool Library is a non-profit tool lending service for people who want to create, make, build, and grow. A membership gives access to a broad inventory of equipment that includes things like lawn mowers, power drills, stud finders, table saws, gardening shovels and soldering irons; just to name a few.

samuel.mcneish@thetelegram.com

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