Friday, May 27, 2011

Timebanks are catching on in New Zealand

Tomorrow I find myself speaking at not one but two meetings about our timebank. How to start one seems to be the in-thing. Now why would an inner city suburb of our capital city have a talk on a local currency like a timebank? It probably isn't because they are broke (local currencies thrive in hard economic times) because the average salary in Wellington is the highest in NZ. It is possibly to build community cohesion to insure them against crises like earthquakes.

The other talk (Ben is doing the main talk and I am just there to back up, knowing the history of our Otaki Timebank) is at Paraparaumu. A keen young woman started a Facebook group and it is through that group the event has been advertised. The Kapiti Coast is like the suburbia Kunstler talks about as being the most expensive experiment ever done by western nations. It is spread out.

Lyttelton has been a huge success as a timebank having been going over five years now. Margaret Jefferies is an inspiring speaker and has done a stalwart job over that time. Lyttelton is geographically clearly defined and the houses are all within a smallish area, whereas Paraparaumu, Raumati, Waikanae, Paekakariki is spread out over a narrow strip of coastal land. Quite a different profile.

I have also had a call from someone in Johnsonville and a woman in Tauranga about how to start a timebank. Must get in touch with Margaret, because it is they that have the funding to support new timebanks now. They are nearly recovered from the resignation of their coordinator and in a month will be up and running well.

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