The official opening of Kiama’s Timebanking exchange heard that Kiama is already a star performer in the State Government initiative, with the number of people registering with offers of help since the initial launch exceeding expectations.
As we explained back then, Timebanking is an online community time trading system that facilitates the voluntary exchange of services between members.
With time logged as a currency, people do not have to do direct reciprocal trades with people. Instead they can provide a service for person A and then use that time credit to pay for a service by person B.
“You don’t need to be part of a volunteer organisation, you can give of your own skill set,” says Gareth Ward MP. “You might be a retired person with great experience you are prepared to share, and in exchange you can get something back that you’d value.”
For those who do belong to an organisation, Time-banking is a way of accounting for the hours spent, which can then be donated again to the organisation or a community chest to help those in need. Organisations can join to attract specialist skills from non-members.
It is also a way for organisations to validate how many volunteer hours are being put in to their causes, which could be helpful in attracting grant funding.
The Kiama Timebanking site currently has offers to provide services as diverse as grant writing, help with gardening, companionship for older residents, French conversation, photography advice and bereavement counselling.
The needs have been slower coming in, but include ukulele lessons, sewing volunteers for Boomerang Bags and volunteers for Council projects.
“Timebanking is a great new way to facilitate people helping each other,” says Mr Ward.
Details: To find out more and register as a participant, go to http://www.timebanking.com.au or call Louise Croker on 4232 0444