Spending time, building communities: Evaluating time banks and mutual volunteering as a tool to tackle social exclusion

G Seyfang

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The findings of the first national survey of time banks in the UK are presented. A time bank is a community currency that aims to build social capital and promote community self-help through mutual volunteering (both giving and receiving help in exchange for time credits), targeting socially excluded groups. The origins, size, scope and character of time banks in the UK are described, and early indications suggest that they are starting to achieve their objectives, albeit on a small scale reflecting their recent introduction. Practice and policy implications are discussed. With increased funding and a favourable policy framework (concerning implications for incapacity benefit recipients in particular), they have great potential to transform volunteering for the twenty-first century and to help foster new kinds of community participation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-48
Number of pages20
JournalVoluntary Action
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2001

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