If you’ve already explored our map and found there’s no suitable time bank in your area, why not start your own? Timebanking UK are here to support you every step of the way…
How to start a community time bank
- Check there’s a need. Talk to friends, neighbours and family and see if they’d be interested in joining.
- As soon as you’ve got a few community members on board, join Timebanking UK. We’ll supply all the resources you need to get started, including training and access to a network of hundreds of people already involved in timebanking. And we’re always here if you need to call or email us.
- Local businesses and organisations can benefit too – do some asset mapping to see who is in the area and arrange to meet with them.
- Hold a preliminary meeting. Get some momentum going by finding out what each person could offer and what they’d like to request. Invite the local organisations you’ve located and find out what they’d like from your time bank.
- Establish a core team and work out roles. Outlines of the key roles are available in our Members’ Area.
- Attend a TBUK training day. Our Broker Training Days are a fantastic opportunity to meet the TBUK team, get an insight into the world of timebanking, and see timebanking in action.
- Set up your page on our bespoke Time Online 2 software (TOL2). Use TOL2 to record member details, track exchanges and produce reports. You can try out our demo software here before you even join Timebanking UK.
- Think about sustainability – keeping time banks going after two years can be challenging. It’s worth thinking about your aims and making an immediate action plan and a long-term plan – the ongoing support you receive as a member of Timebanking UK will help keep you going strong through any rocky patches.
- Fundraising is important. Think about what you need money for, how much, and which local organisations might be able to support you in exchange for resources, publicity or time credits.
- Monitor and evaluate your impact by asking questions when people join the time bank then again a few months later – clear statistics and stories about how the time bank is improving lives will make it easier for you to construct a case for funding support.
- Do you need insurance? Timebanking UK has a recommended insurer for members.
- Meet regularly to talk to your team and time bank members about what’s working and what’s not. Communication is key.
- Run group activities so members get to know each other and start to build relationships within the time bank.
- Get to know your members – chat to people to find out what they need or want and how you can help good exchanges happen.
- Make sure all members are involved in the running of the time bank if they want to be, and include them in decision making. Co-producing your time bank will help ensure it keeps going.
- Finally, get involved! Take part in a few exchanges so new members quickly see how it works. The more people get timebanking, the more the word will spread, and the better your time bank will serve your community.
If you are considering setting up a network of time banks, find out more here.