In April this year, we hosted the official launch of It’s Our Time Wales at St Fagans Museum of Welsh Life. The programme celebrates the invaluable roles that older people play in our communities and champions the everyday heroes that contribute their time. It’s Our Time Wales opens up discussion around ageing and the community, tackles stigma and preconceptions, and embraces positive approaches. Funded by the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Social Services Grant, the programme also aims to improve health outcomes for individuals aged 50+ by using Time Credits to reduce loneliness and isolation.
We were delighted to welcome as our launch keynote speaker 82 year-old Professor Edgar Cahn, the originator of time banking, who travelled all the way from the US to join our event. Edgar was the ideal person to address our audience – it was after a serious heart attack at 46, and being told he could no longer work, that he began to reconsider how ‘value’ was defined. From this, Cahn developed the idea for time banking – a concept that values everyone’s contributions equally and forms the basis for our Time Credits model. Watch Edgar’s speech in full
For us It’s Our Time Wales is about focusing on what’s strong – not what’s wrong – and improving health and wellbeing by taking a more positive approach to ageing. We believe a society in which older people can continue to participate and contribute their time, energy, experience and wisdom, can bring many benefits to communities in Wales.
Sarah Rochira, Older Persons Commissioner for Wales, has highlighted that older people are worth a huge £1bn to the Welsh economy – after health and social care costs – and that it’s time they were recognised for their positive contribution to society, with Spice’s Time Credits being an excellent way to do that.
‘Too many older people become frail and lose their independence unnecessarily and events such as this help them in so many ways, both physically and emotionally. It is also really important that older people see positive images of growing older so that they realise there is still so much to look forward to.’
We love hearing stories of people earning Time Credits, sharing Time Credits with friends and family, and of positive ageing – from veteran bikers to yoga gurus and from ninja knitters to community breakfast clubs – please do share with us how you’ve earned or spent your Time Credits and share your #ItsOurTime stories with us.