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Community Tool Sharing Operation to Open in Covington

A community tool-share operation will open in Covington on Saturday.

Empower Tools - the project supported by the Center for Great Neighborhoods, the Kenton County Public Library, and Wolf Tree Farms - will be found at 305 Pike Street.

“At Wolf Tree Farms a big part of our mission is to beautify and improve our community,” said Gus Wolf, owner of Wolf Tree Farms. “Empower Tools is the perfect way for us to realize that mission." 

Wolf is familiar in the community as the owner and wrangler of the famous Goebel Goats.

The free tool-lending service is the result of research conducted by The Center for its FreshLo initiative. While speaking to Covington residents, representatives from The Center discovered a need for a tool sharing program and workshops to learn more about urban gardening and property improvements.

“Residents expressed a desire for access to affordable resources and knowledge. We saw that as an opportunity to provide a welcoming space for tool lending, skills development, and community building,” said Kate Greene, Program Manager for Community Development at The Center.

Anyone with a Kenton County Public Library card will be able to borrow tools for up to a week. Items available will include everything from a moisture meter or a pressure washer, to an electrician’s kit and a hand cultivator. Tool lending is free, but there will be a $5 late fee for every day a tool is past due.

“We’re pleased to be part of this innovative partnership that will benefit so many in our community,” said Dave Schroeder, Executive Director of the Kenton County Public Library. “We hope that this program will encourage people to improve their property and will help them save money in the process.”

In addition to lending home and property improvement items, Empower Tools will host one DIY workshop a month on various home improvement topics such as brick masonry, tree care, or home weatherization. 

Empower Tools will be open Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Wednesdays from 4  to 7 p.m.

The tool share is in search of volunteers who have experience with home renovation projects and handy community members who can help maintain the tools. Individuals interested in getting involved with Empower Tools can email [email protected].

Funding for Empower Tools was secured through the Kresge Foundation and Friends of the Kenton County Public Library. Additional funding comes from the Elsa Heisel Sule foundation, a local grant making foundation focused on opportunities in education, the community, and arts in the tri-state area. The foundation awarded Empower Tools $15,000 to cover part-time staffing costs for one year and pay for additional tool needs.

-Staff report

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