Fair Trade

Fair Trade

Get what you want and need — no cash required.

Fair Trade

Say you can turn out killer pastries, but you’re a klutz with a hammer and in possession of a shelving unit you bought at Ikea that’s still languishing in its box.

What if a friendly stranger who lives in the neighborhood came by to assemble your furniture and accept a baking lesson in lieu of pay?

That’s precisely the kind of exchange that Echo Park Time Bank facilitates.

Launched over last summer, the first L.A. chapter of this worldwide networking organization enables members of a neighborhood-sized community to barter services with one another. What that means is that urbanites can now volunteer their skills (from teaching French to coaching baseball) and their time in exchange for services (dog walking, baby-sitting, culinary lessons) performed by others in their neighborhood.

Besides the obvious benefits (you get chores done around the house and learn to make tamales from scratch), it’s a great way to make new friends and possibly meet other singles who live nearby.

To apply for membership, fill out an online application and scrounge up two recommendation letters. For more information, visit echoparktimebank.com

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