Introduction to Time Banking

Please watch this short video about the Lathrup Village Time Bank to learn more about time banking.

TimeBanks Development and Formation

The concepts of social justice, community health, co-production, neighborhood fostering, hunger management, well-being of all people, self-help, social welfare, equality, and alternative currencies are altogether abiding concerns for the rights, welfare, and dignity of the disenfranchised. These ideas were fused together by the late law professor, author, and civil rights activist Edgar S. Cahn, Ph.D., who used them to form the model for TimeBanking and who founded what is now

Time Banking Concept

At its most basic level, Time Banking is simply about spending an hour doing something for somebody in your community. That hour goes into the Time Bank as a Time Credit. Then you have a Time Credit to spend on having someone doing something for you. It’s a simple idea, but it has powerful ripple effects in building community connections.

Time banking is an organized way to share our knowledge, skills, and services with each other.  Instead of dollars, we bank hours.  Each member has an account from which they can spend hours and to which other members can pay hours.  Members post requests for help and offers of services.  All transactions are of equal value, an hour for an hour. 

Timebanking is designed to build an alternative economy based in the belief that each one of us is equally valuable.  In order to make this a reality, TimeBanks provide the power to redefine work, encourage reciprocity, build community, and foster respect.

Each Time Bank has a website where you list what you would like to do for other members and what services other members are seeking. You earn Time Credits after each service you perform and then you get to spend it on whatever you want from the listings.

With Time Banking, you will be working with a small group of committed individuals who are joined together for a common good. It connects you to the best in people because it creates a system that connects unmet needs with untapped resources. To see what happens each week when you are part of a Time Bank is deeply fulfilling, especially if you are helping to make it run.

"Our Time Bank" Background

Our Time Bank was founded by Melissa Minkin in 2009. OTB is open to all people who live, work, or attend school within our boundaries in the Western Los Angeles area. Our membership has grown fast, but we are still small and working on building community. 

Our Mission

To nurture and expand a movement that promotes equality and builds caring community economies through inclusive exchange of time and talent.  We are working with members and local communities to strengthen and rebuild community, foster a network of skill sharing, and use TimeBanks, Sharing Economies, and our Repair Café to achieve wide-ranging goals such as social justice, bridges between diverse communities, and local ecological sustainability.

Learn More

Time Banks exist to promote exchanges that honor the following five core values.

1. Assets – We are all assets. Every human being has something to contribute.

2. Redefining Work – Some work is beyond price. Work has to be redefined to value whatever it takes to raise healthy children, build strong families, revitalize neighborhoods, make democracy work, advance social justice, and make the planet sustainable. That kind of work needs to be honored, recorded and rewarded.

3. Reciprocity – Helping works better as a two-way street. The question: “How can I help you?” needs to change so we ask: “How can we help each other build the world we both will live in?”

4. Social Networks – We need each other. Networks are stronger than individuals. People helping each other reweave communities of support, strength & trust. Community is built upon sinking roots, building trust, creating networks. Special relationships are built on commitment.

5. Respect – Every human being matters. Respect underlies freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and everything we value. Respect supplies the heart and soul of democracy. When respect is denied to anyone, we all are injured. We must respect where people are in the moment, not where we hope they will be at some future point.