Veterans Time Banking by VIP’s Alan Kelly

On Tuesday 2nd July 2013, members of the Veterans in Practice group accompanied by Angy of the Healthy Spaces programme at FACT, attended a meeting of Time Banking in Liverpool. The purpose was to meet the Time Bank project manager Siobhan Riordon and to speak with people who were already involved with time-banking.

Siobhan, after introducing herself, then gave a lengthy explanation about the introduction of time banking in Liverpool, the project had been funded for 12 months as an assessment period and was in fact in its final week.

The concept of time banking is quite simple! Various groups of people form hubs, personal skills are identified within the hub and a kind of barter takes place, I will take Mrs So-and-so shopping or walk Mr So-and-so’s dogs, someone else will fix a fridge door or replace a lock on the front door for me any other member of the group.

No money changes hands, instead a system of adding up the time used for any particular task carried out is noted (or banked), after a certain number of hours have been banked, members can then request through the controller of the hub, that the hours they have accumulated can be used as currency to pay for jobs or tasks they require.

At this stage I think it would be fair to say that, to the VIPs at least, it seemed to be a far more complicated system than the original description indicated. It seemed to us that a lot of central organising would be required to make it viable.

After much discussion and some serious questioning from Angy and the VIPs, the meeting closed with an invitation to a attend a celebration of a year of time banking in Liverpool to be held on the 12th July – the invitation was accepted and we look forward to the occasion.

To be continued…