During my time in Lugo (Spain) doing the IVY (Interreg Volunteer Youth as part of the European Solidarity Corps) I met a group of citizens who carry out "the time bank" in the city. Something that I found very interesting and I decided to make a video report about it. You can see it in Spanish with English subtitles on this link: youtube.com/watch?v=0Ty68kfTow4&t=8s
A Time Bank is a social economic alternative. A system of exchange of services for time that promotes social relations and equality, where the exchange unit is not the usual money, taking advantage of people's abilities, with an hour equivalent to a credit service.
They can be removed at any time and spent on a wide range of services and opportunities offered by other users. From painting classes, sock classes for lefties, helping in the garden, fixing a shower, ... Everything can be exchanged.
The time of each participant is valued equally, either beginner or an expert person prepared. It seems that conventional money is currently not enough to fix all the problems that societies face. The idea is to create a new kind of money to pay people for what needs to be done, valuing contributions equally.
The operation is similar to that of any bank. The interested party opens an account of hours and specifies the services, skills and knowledge offered and expected to receive. This account is online. Each time you provide a service you accumulate hours in your account, which you then exchange for services you need.
The time banks have a series of objectives that I find interesting to mention and take into account to better understand:
1. Improve the quality of life of the neighbors by favoring the creation of social networks based on mutual help and solidarity, which also contribute to the prevention of situations of isolation, loneliness, vulnerability...
2. Create meeting spaces where people meet and exchange knowledge, skills and experiences covering needs for help, learning and care.
3. Promote positive human values: trust, communication, participation, reciprocity, equality, interculturality and social cohesion that help the individual and collective welfare.
4. Strengthen cooperation and intercultural coexistence by promoting knowledge, interaction and mutual respect.
5. Enhance diversity (sex, age, origin, knowledge, profession, occupation, skills, ...) as wealth.
The Time Bank does not exist only in Lugo. This is the example I had closest when I was living there but it is a global movement. Are you part of a Time Bank? Do you know if there is one in your city?
As the Little Prince says:
"It was the time you spent with your rose that made it so important." "Men no longer have time to know anything, buy things already made to the merchants, but since there is no merchant of friends, men no longer have friends."
Do you know if there is in your city some initiative as this Time Bank?