£10,000 Lottery boost for Timebank
Christmas comes early
Christmas has come early for the Blairgowrie and Rattray Time bank after it was announced on Tuesday that it has received a National Lottery cash boost of £10,000.
The Blair gowrie and Rattray Timebank offers people in the town an opportunity to exchange activities such as gardening, DIY and other general tasks.
The project is one of 100 community and voluntary groups across Scotland to benefit from grants of between £300 to £10,000 and the funding will cover running costs and allow the group to engage a parttime development worker.
The Blair gowrie and Rat tray Time bank was set up around three years ago and works by volunteers swapping skills and services to help make the lives of others in their community more comfortable.
For every hour a volunteer spends doing something they earn one credit, which they can then claim back through the timebank on a service they need, or donate the credit to a ‘community pot’ so that someone who can’t earn their own credits can still use project.
One of the volunteer timebank brokers for Blairgowrie and Rattray, Joanne Rice, said that they were delighted with the news and that the money would be of huge benefit to the group.
The group is also keen to get more people involved.
Fellow timebank broker Ivy Maclachlan explained: “You can walk a dog, pick up shopping, give a lift, help fill in a form, show someone how to work a mobile, just have a coffee and a chat, help around the house, do some weeding, feed some chickens - the list is endless.
“Whatever you need, and whatever you can offer to do is valued and valuable and it is not too onerous.
“We are always interested in hearing from people who want to use the services or offer some time in exchange for other services.”
She added: “As well as new active members, we would like to encourage more people to take up more of the services we can offer.
“Time-banking is not just all about ‘need’, it can be about ‘want’ as well. So maybe you would like someone to teach you something, or perhaps do your ironing one week.
“People often don’t like to ask, but by asking for a service they are actually helping someone else to feel as though they are helping and are involved in something - there is lots of evidence that when people are helping others and getting involved in activities or their local communities they are healthier.”
In addition to individuals, local organisations are also involved in the scheme and in some cases, new groups have started up as a direct result of a time bank initiative, such as a new craft group.
Ivy said: “It really does make a difference to people’s lives but we rely on people coming forward to offer or request help.
“It’s a great way to build relationships, create new friend ships, make communities stronger and to help people and encourage volunteering.”
To find out more about lottery funding visit the website at www. biglotteryfund.org.uk/ awards for all scotland or telephone 0300 123 7110.
To contact the Blairgowrie and Rattray Time bank, call 07546 587306.
It does make a difference to people’s lives