Time Banks: One Way To Swap Services
The concept behind a Time Bank is simple. You pay for what you need with your services. You give an hour of the kind of work you can do and receive in return an hour of the kind of work you need. It doesn't matter what kind of services you can provide - just that you provide services that someone else needs. No money is required.
If you are not healthy enough to provide services, perhaps one of your friends or family members can donate time to a Time Bank on your behalf.
How A Time Bank Works
- With a Time Bank, you donate time doing something for someone else who is a member of the Time Bank. For each hour you donate, you receive one Time Dollar. A Time Dollar can be exchanged for an hour of assistance from another member of the Time Bank.
- Time Banks members offer all kinds of services, ranging from transportation to and from medical appointments to legal services.
- All Time Dollars are given the same value. Baby sitting services are worth the same as a plumber's services.
- The Time Bank keeps track of the number of hours you donate and sets the rules.
- Most Time Banks use computer software programs that allow members to find out what kinds of services are available. The programs also list the services you are willing to donate, or your friends and family members are willing to donate on your behalf.
To Locate A Time Bank In Your Area, go to www.timebanks.org or call 202.686.5200. If there is no Time Bank in your area, the web site sells a kit which shows you how to start your own group. You can also contact your local disease specific non-profit organization or look in your local Yellow Pages.
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