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Trading skills for goods
Mon 6-Sep-10
8:17 am
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Budo1

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So i guess this would be the best place for a short piece as it is a way i found to get by when times are a little rough.

Years ago when i first qualified as Sports Therapist and was renovating our first house / bringing a new life into the world and struggling to still pay my way training i found people around me need treatment but unable to afford so i tentitively mentioned ' what can you do?' ' lets swap' to a few of the lads down the Karate club. To my amazment it to but a few months before i was not only helping my mate out but getting phone calls...' you dont know me but you treat my friends mum and she said...... and im a plumber and...'

A little research and i found the  'Lets' system i Winchester Hampshire. A barter system concerning  the accumulation of ' hamlets' alloted units given according to skill or product offered! Joy of joys... straight swaps.. not tax to pay and everything getting doe.. all happy. i must confess on times finding my self so very busy but no cash flow and had to get stern on myself to find a balance.

i had our walls and ceiling replastered, kitchen fitted, Private 1 to 1 karate lessons, plumbing done, carpentry, jam, preserves and wine exchanged, boxes of organic friut and veg delivered, a night out at lovely resturant, wine from a chain of stores that joined the scheme - happy days and people had their back pains eased away, pulls and tares mended and whiplash soothed and dispelled.

Its been 9 years since being home in Wales and i have been gently reminded of these wonderful times,  i teach martial arts in a town a little further up the vallys and the one club is a small but lovely little community based club. Everyone rallies around and helps each other and there is fantastic support from all. This credit crunchy nut thing that we are trying to work our way out of has his these areas hard and many things like these training days have fallen to the wayside.

This weekend i ran a coaching workshop and encouraged my senior students to travel from cardiff and train in the little hall, most of whole professional people with still some disposable income. knowing the hall and overheads were paid for i let an off the cuff remark that if the student wishing to train from that area wanted to we would ' sort something out'.. ' 'bring me some eggs from the allotment or something'...... it was sheer delight to see bags of beans courgette, marrow and the like.. a few dozen eggs. Now appreciated that singularly half pound of beens , six eggs and two courgette do not make up the value of the coaching time but it was the gesture that ment so very much, collectively it was like harvest festival!! Such joy i have to say it made my heart sore - sorry slushy bit here. It also made for a fun packed and wonderfull coaching day where spirits were elivated in all

Happy Days cheers and yes there was a couple of pound spare for a pint of cider wink

 

Mon 6-Sep-10
11:12 am
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JoannaS
Latvia

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I think it is a great idea when people pull together like that but I heed your warning about getting the balance right, sometimes you still need hard cash to pay for things and like it or not the government still need our taxes in order to run the country - even if we don't always agree it is going about it in the right way. cheers

Mon 6-Sep-10
12:04 pm
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brightspark
Wilts

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You're right Joanna - tax is a contribution and not a burden as some people call it.

It is hard to think that way though when you feel that it is being mis-spent, especially by those who should know better. (Sorry, perhaps that should've been on the ranting & raving .......)

brightsparklystuff

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
Don't strive to make your presence noticed
Just make your absence felt"
Mon 6-Sep-10
12:16 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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Sat 12-Aug-06
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The idea of regular bartering is excellent. Fiona is able to do it sometimes, trading her computer knowledge / training for various items like unwanted oak beams for a raised bed, for example, or a roll of chicken wire. The restricting factor is that there are only three households locally who engage her for that purpose from time to time.

I have never done it myself but it is something I would love to see taking off on a local basis. In fact, Rob's article has given me an idea as to how we might adapt the forum for our own village as a pilot scheme, promoted with a leaflet drop that could be combined with Fiona's flowers etc. If it works, we could expand it to have a little forum for any locality - it would just need an energetic local organiser. Isn't that how anything that gets done actually gets done? whistle

Never knowingly underfed

Mon 6-Sep-10
1:03 pm
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Budo1

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Danny yes an excellent idea.. a swap shop or corner market place where we could trade off skills etc ok

Mon 6-Sep-10
1:22 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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Seems a good idea, I wonder how well it will take off?  

I'll try that again!

Mon 6-Sep-10
2:30 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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I am trying to set up a Classifieds section but I have been unable to get it working yet. There are one or two settings that I need to figure out.

I have set up the categories, just a few for starters, and included a trading / bartering category.

It will be free for personal ads with a scale of charges for businesses. That seems to be a popular approach on other sites that I have looked at for ideas.

Maybe that is a better idea than a local forum, although I have always been keen on local forums. Sometimes the ones I have seen are vibrant but others are more or less dead. I think integrating it into a larger forum like this one could be a good way forward. That way, there is plenty of non-local topics of interest to help attract people back even if the local forum is sluggish.

 

Never knowingly underfed

Mon 6-Sep-10
8:33 pm
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JoannaS
Latvia

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Your right Danny it is usually an enthusiastic individual that starts anything off, but it can get a bit tiring though and the enthusiastic individual has to know how to get others on board and enthusiastic too or they end up burned out. I like your mix of the local and the not so local too. Local is best but I guess that sometimes there are some skills that could either be used more widely and in big demand or some skills are not needed by so many people and so needs a wider audience so to speak. cheers

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