TimeBanks Offer Options To Cash-Based Buying 11-08-2010 - WNEM TV 5

TimeBanks Offer Options To Cash-Based Buying 11-08-2010

Money is tight for many in this tough economy. But one Michigan community is cashing in on an idea that promises things like home repairs and child care at almost no cost.
TV5's I-Team traveled to Lathrup Village where the currency is "time" not money.
Residents are involved in what's called, The Lathrup Village Timebank, in Southfield, Mich. The program is a branch of the national non-profit organization Timebanks USA.
The program is simple. For every hour you spend doing something for someone, you earn one time dollar. Then you have a time dollar to spend on having someone do something for you.
"Let's say I babysit for you and I get two hours in my bank, and i'm looking for a good cook and you're not a good cook, I can get somebody else to cook for me," said Kim Hodge. Hodge is co-founder of the Lathrup Village Timebank.
"If you're cooking for me, either I reimburse you for the supplies, but it's not your job to pay to cook for me," added Hodge.
Time dollars are banked and tracked on a secure Internet database. Everyone has their own account and a profile that lists what they can offer. Everything from home repairs and tutoring to baby-sitting.
It has saved residents hundreds if not thousands of dollars over the year. The timebank does have a $25 yearly fee for individuals and $40 fee for families. The cost is operational and some communities use it to perform background checks.
The social movement is gaining momentum and a Grand Blanc man is trying to bring the program here to Mid-Michigan.
It's called the Grumlaw Timebank, and if you are interested, visit the web site to see the three upcoming workshops in November to get involved.
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