Sweat Equity: Gift of time and talent

TIPP CITY — Time. We can save it, we can spend it, but we can never get it back once it’s gone.

The New Path non-profit organization has recently added a new ministry of a Time Bank to its long list of community outreach programs with the help of a special grant.

New Path Inc.’s Executive Director Bill Lutz said the organization started a Time Bank in February, using the United Way of Troy’s special grant in memory of the the agency’s former executive director, the late Lucy DiSalvo, called “Lucy’s Gift.”

“I knew when we got Lucy’s Gift, and when (United Way of Troy Executive Director) Richard Bender said use this to help the community, I thought the Time Bank was a perfect way to do that,” Lutz said. “This brings people together and it helps provide a level of dignity where folks can now help each other out.”

“It’s where people can ask for help and where they can give help,” said program coordinator Sherry Loschi.

Loschi, who has been a part of the New Path ministry organization for nearly 15 years this August, said she came up with the idea to add a Time Bank to its ministry to find a frugal way to exchange services within the community.

“It’s not a new idea, it’s happening all over the country,” Loschi said. “In European countries, time banks are all the rage. It’s a cash-less system of exchange. It’s like networking with people who want to network.”

Loschi said the Time Bank has provided more than 225 transactions between its 50 members since February.

Loschi said she spent time researching web-based Time Bank software, which keeps track of hours, talents, and requests. Members talents range from sewing, landscaping, and gardening to baking and cooking, and the most popular request, transportation.

“I’ve hemmed pants for people, we have a lady who bakes cakes, we have a lady who has changed oil who has done that for people five or six times,” she said. “We have people who provide transportation, which has been the most utilized service of the program. We have several people in the program who don’t have vehicles or they don’t drive so the transpiration has been provided to take them to church, to volunteer, to doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping, all kinds of necessary trips.”

The membership fee is $1 per month and is prorated for the year for an annual cost of $12 to help pay for the software used to track transactions and requests. The New Path Time Bank requires those who provide transportation or child care service to undergo a background check paid for by the provider. An informational session will be held at 4 p.m. Friday, July 3 at the New Path organization building, located at 7695 S. County Road 25-A, Tipp City, for anyone who is interested about the Time Bank and its membership.

New Path is a non-profit organization and became the umbrella agency for outreach ministries at Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church in Tipp City, Ohio.

For more information about the New Path Time Bank, contact Sherry Loschi at sloschi@ginghamsburg.org or call (937) 669-1213.

For more information about the United Way of Troy or to make a donations, visit www.unitedwayoftroy.org.