Time bank is given credit at conference
IF you have the time, then this bank needs your deposits.
Time Bankers from across the city got together this week to plan for the future.
Plymouth City Council hosted its first Time Banking conference on Monday with a guest appearance from the founder of the concept, Dr Edgar Cahn.
The conference, at the Council House, brought together people involved with the six Time Banks and other community representatives in the city to debate how they can support communities and make plans for the future.
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Time Banking is based on the principle that a person contributes some of their time to help another and then receives time credits which can be exchanged for services they need.
People volunteer their time for a wide variety of activities such as gardening, dog walking and help with languages. Six Time Banks in Plymouth are either established or being developed. Stonehouse, St Budeaux, Whitleigh and Barne Barton are funded by Plymouth City Council while Opportunity Knocks and About Time are run by other groups.
Cllr Chris Penberthy, the city's Cabinet member for co-operatives and community development, said: "As a co-operative council we want to support and strengthen the work communities are doing and help them develop a sense of mutual support. Time Banking is an excellent way to empower individuals and groups within neighbourhoods.
"It builds social networks of people who give and receive support. Everyone has something to give and everyone is equal, an hour of everyone's time is worth the same amount."
More than 400 people and 30 organisations have already joined up to Time Banking in Plymouth. The Time Banks are working together in partnership so by joining one, people can link into others.
In his keynote speech Dr Cahn, a civil rights lawyer and social innovator, said that after having had a heart attack in the 1980s he saw how every hour we are given is a gift and that we can all make a contribution. He said Time Banking honoured the capacity we all have to make a difference in the world and how we can use our time to help others.