By David Gledhill, Marketing and Communications Lead
Across Torbay is a wealth of talent just waiting to be tapped into, a series of events needing people to go to them and a whole host of organisations offering and wanting help.
For the past few years we have been working to bring everything together in one place to provide the ultimate Torbay sharing website and the final tweaks are now being put to the new look www.torbaytogether.org.uk
Run by the Torbay Community Development Trust, Torbay Together has been redesigned using the expertise of a company called MadeOpen who have just one main aim – to devise a social networking platform that leads to community action.
It is a simple concept – all those conversations currently taking place on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, to name but a few, should be channelled via one that focuses on Torbay. A sort of friends across the Bay.
It can become the hub for everything that is happening – events, meetings, social groups, sports and a variety of entertainment – whether it is on at the end of the road or in a professional venue a few miles away in Brixham, Paignton or Torquay.
It can be the place where you can exchange ideas, skills, information and knowledge in the hope that you can find the answers to your day to day challenges on your own doorstep.
It can also be the place where you can volunteer for opportunities or find volunteers for projects you have in progress.
It is already home to the Torbay Timebank where 383 people have already registered to swap skills and time for credits, not cash. The principle is simple – you spend an hour doing something for someone else and then you are entitled to an hour of someone else’s time in exchange.
The possibilities for the Timebank are endless – you might need a haircut, jobs doing in the garden, help with your shopping, your dog walking, or some small DIY tasks done around the home.
No matter what the skill given or received, everyone’s time is valued equally; one hour of sharing skills or helping others is recognised by giving that person one hour as a time credit – a community loyalty point.
Or put another way, being a good neighbour and being rewarded for it. Your skills put to best use for someone who needs them and really appreciates them. Already 5,877 hours have been exchanged – that is near to 250 days!
Torbay Together is part of the Torbay Together – Naturally Inspiring Vision which aims to unite communities and ensure the bay thrives as a place to live and do business.
To get involved all you have to do is go to www.torbaytogether.org.uk and then you have a few choices, but we recommend that you:
- Join the community. Create your own profile, message other members, keep a track of the activities you are involved in and the connections you have made within Torbay Together.
- Browse the community activities. Our community activities section lets you post your own support services and social groups. Use the activity stream to find out what’s available in your neighbourhood. Register on the platform to add your own listings.
- Join the timebank. Our timebank is a safe space for all members to exchange their skills for time credits. Use the activity stream to find offers of, and requests for, help from your neighbours. Register on the platform to join the exchange.
- Volunteer. Community volunteering feature helps you to connect with volunteering opportunities and organisations. Use the activity stream to find volunteering opportunities. Register on the platform to post your own.
- Make connections. Our platform helps you to take action for the good of you and for the good of the whole neighbourhood. Use the member stream to connect with other members. Register on the platform to develop your profile.
In short, www.torbaytogether.org.uk aims to be the go-to website to help you exchange information, support and skills on your doorstep.
If it is happening in Torbay and is of interest to the people who live here, we want to get it onto Torbay Together and if there is a need that needs meeting we want to be able to fulfil it.
In Torbay, we have what we need when we share what we have.
Next week – June 1st to June 6th is National Volunteers Week, a time to say thank you for the fantastic contribution volunteers make and a time to reflect on your own contribution.
Torbay Together gives you all you need to make a difference in your community. Over to you.