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Planning ahead

Finally on Friday 24th July we got the whole Tai Tokerau Timebank coordination team together for the first time ever! Between the Covid rāhui (which kicked in just 2 days after Graeme started) and other commitments we'd been limited to working via Zoom, emails, Facebook, Google Docs, phone and Trello, which certainly tested our technical skills and internet connections at times!

However despite the challenges we still managed to complete a Strategic Planning process via Zoom with the fabulous help of two then newly signed up timebankers, Helen Roberts and Ava Ryerson, both of whom were riding out the rāhui on their yachts with their respective partners at Opua marina.

It was a timely process, not just because we were newly formed as a team of five, but because we'd rather rashly put in a last minute submission to Far North District Council's Annual Plan (another result of the Alternative Economics Zoom discussion group!), and were then called on to speak to it!

The strategic planning process meant we had at least got our values in order by then. Timebanking is an international system founded in the USA with its own core principles, but we wanted to explore what they meant to us in our Aotearoa NZ context and express them in our own terms.

We also came up with four kete of focus for our mahi:

  • Community awareness

  • Growing membership

  • Enriching engagement of current members

  • Increase and maximise resources.

'Growing membership' is actually the least of our challenges right now as we recently passed the 300 members mark! The bigger challenge is keeping those members engaged with timebanking; actively making exchanges, sharing skills and resources. We have a number of ideas up our sleeves - keep your eyes open for further info over the coming months!

Meanwhile, if you haven't signed up as a Timebank member already head over to click on Join and fill in the form. You'll need to attend an orientation session to get you going as a full member. We have four a month via Zoom at various times and days through the week, or you can make alternative arrangements with your local coordinator.

The coordination team is made up of: Anna Dunford as Regional Coordinator; a local coordinator for each ward of Far North District Council; Paula Walker (Te Hiku); Charlotte Boss (Bay of Islands-Whangaroa); Graeme Kettle (Kaikohe-Hokianga); and Greer Rasmussen as local coordinator for Whāngārei District Council.

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