houses Clare Caulfield

Clare Caulfield

A timebank is an idea formed by an American entrepreneur, who had a heart attack. When laid up on hospital, he realised that this was a wonderful idea, and now it’s used worldwide. Timebanks basically give everyone the chance to earn the same ‘hour of time’ and this is used to then swap for services needed, by someone else.

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The administrator uses the software to set one up, and everyone lists their skills (and qualifications/insurance if needed). Then you basically offer services, and then your ‘money earned’ is used for something else. It tends to fill gaps left in society (carers, dog-walkers etc) so does not affect local business nor inflation). And it can be a good test market for a business, and you can donate unwanted hours to those who can’t work (say with medical issues etc).

Here’s an example. Say you’re a young mum with little money but you can sew. So you offer to sew hems for people in the community. In return, the hours you earn means a vetted person walks your dog while you collect children from school, and the extra ‘hours’ are used for someone to mend your gate and paint your house. They do this work and in turn they can get someone to do the shopping for an elderly relative, or run errands. You get the idea.

The sites below cover all the essentials, and you can find your nearest Timebank, or set one up. It’s a wonderful way to connect communities. Between all of you, you can take care of nearly all the issues that big business and councils can’t solve. Find out more about Timebanks around the world:

  1. UK
  2. Ireland
  3. US
  4. Canada
  5. NZ

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