6th June 2016
Time banks act as a way of harnessing the assets or expertise in the community and involve members of the community registering skills, enthusiasm, talents and time to others. For every hour that is given a time bank member can then ‘withdraw’ equivalent support or services when they might need it.
Ann Hayes from the Barrow Community Trust met Timebank Broker Zoe Hartley, (back left) and 13th Trinity Brownies who are taking part in the time bank, at Risedale Retirement and Residential Home where they are singing to residents as part of the project.
Based in the Love Barrow Alliance building on Dalton Road, more than 60 members have joined the project since it formed. During that time members have carried out tasks ranging from helping a person move house, creating props for a pantomime and putting on crafts activity sessions for elderly residents.
By tapping into Barrow’s volunteering sector, the Timebank creates a new network that enables people to both give and receive, in addition to helping some of society’s most isolated people.
In addition to giving a helping hand to members of the public, the Timebank also enables people to do something valuable with their time and become more integrated within the community.
By sharing a wide variety of skills and talents, people can access a fantastic resource that helps tighten the bonds of individual communities.
Neil Doherty, Manager of Barrow Timebank, said: “It just makes people feel good. If you do a good turn for someone you feel a lot better.
“You can also meet new people. There are timebanks all over the world and you can use your Timebank credits to stay at people’s houses as well. You always get something out of it whether it’s getting your lawn cut or something more exotic like going to America.”
Barrow Timebank was officially launched in 2015 after a pilot was jointly funded by Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Cumbria County Council in 2013.