Yesterday was the Dearne hOurbank Launch, held in our building. This is a venture seeking to unite volunteers and allowing people to invest their time and skills to help others and also to receive help from people whose talents may well be different!

IMG_2434 IMG_2435People can choose what ‘service’ they offer (making cards, befriending people, helping with lifts or shopping or ironing or decorating, helping to write letters for people, to name but a few) and how much time they want to ‘bank’; based on what time they have banked, they can then ask for the equivalent time from another member of the community in a different area. (For example, you may choose to bank time by making cards for people and then receive time from another member who does ironing for you!)  It was good to see a range of organisations who are able to help local people, including Food Cycle (which is based at the Community Shop in Goldthorpe and which works to use the food which would otherwise be thrown away from shops and supermarkets to make meals for local residents, served free of charge) and the Goldthorpe Women’s Institute:

IMG_2445 IMG_2446Gemma Cobby from Coalfields’ Regeneration Trust (the charity which supported our application to buy the building we’re in!) is working in Goldthorpe with local residents, seeking to find out what residents love about the area and what their concerns are so that CRT can fund projects which matter to residents. She can be contacted on 01226 272821 or by email ( if you’d like further details.

Other local people just wanted to showcase their talents at card-making or sewing:

IMG_2437It’s easy to be negative about our location, but at events like these, the enthusiasm and passion of local residents are very evident. There are many committed and altruistic people living in our area who are genuinely keen to help others; there are also many organisations working tirelessly in different fields. hOurbank is part of the DIAL Barnsley charity, a charity established over 30 years ago to help disabled people and their carers and families in the Barnsley area, and works in partnership with BMBC and the NHS. For more information, contact Gill Richmond, the hOurbank Coordinator, on 01226 240273 or by email (