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Be challenged - Be a TimeBanker

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What are time banks?

Time Banks originated in the USA in the mid 1980s and Time Banking has been active in the UK since 1998 and there are now over 350 time banks around the UK. There are lots of great stories about the benefits of time banking as a way to bring communities together by getting help with odd jobs and lending a hand yourself. Currently in the UK, from Cornwall to Scotland, there are local Time Banks using times as a medium of exchange to link people together. Time Banks can help fill gaps for local people by them sharing skills, services, talents and life experiences with each other.

How do time banks work?

The idea is very simple, members ‘deposit’ their time in the bank by giving help and support to other members and then are able to ‘withdraw’ their time when they need something done themselves. Everybody’s time is worth the same and for every hour an individual gives helping someone, they are entitled to one hour’s credit in return. All this activity is recorded by a Time Broker who matches up the right task to the right person and also issues Time Bank statements so that members can keep a record of how many hours they have given and received. Chesterfield Time Bank was launched in April 2001 and is based in the Parish Centre, Sheffield Road, Chesterfield. We currently have 200+ members and organisations/community groups on our books spread throughout Chesterfield. We employ two part time staff. Our members have an enormous range of skills and services they can offer to their fellow members. Since the project started we have traded over 80,000 hours. Requests for help are received at the office and timebank members are contacted to enable time to be exchanged. Timebank members have helped out and requested assistance in many ways including:- gardening, basic DIY, catering, companionship, computer training & repair, cycle repair, decorating, guitar & piano lessons, ironing, leaflet distribution, massage, pet care, plant watering to name but a few. Every Timebank is as good as its members want it to be. Time Banks are free to join and all new members receive an hour of time to deposit into their account. Being a Timebanker does not affect your tax position or entitlement to state benefits. There is no ‘catch’ – you just have to be prepared to both receive and give time by helping others and allowing other people to help you!