The GAP Project in Broadstairs, Kent is a charity serving the community in a deprived area. They provide everything from a playgroup for children to a computer suite which the community can use, with help of over 120 volunteers. A vibrant and busy community café sits proudly as the heart of their work.
Kate Grant, Operations Manager at The Gap Project, first heard about Time Credits at this café and decided to trial using them with two of their volunteer-led groups, those helping in the IT suite and at reception.
Kate arranged for Time Credits to be administered by a volunteer and for the use of their IT suite as an opportunity for people with Time Credits to spend, embedding Time Credits neatly into their operations.
Kate found that the volunteers appreciated being recognised and thanked with Time Credits. Local spend opportunities like Ramsgate Tunnels were popular destinations. One volunteer treated herself to a getting her hair done using Time Credits at HairStation Academy.
Gifting Time Credits
The volunteers also loved being able to gift their well-earned Time Credits to family and friends who could also enjoy them. One volunteer chose to take his mum to visit the London Transport Museum, a trip they would otherwise not have considered without Time Credits.
Kate noticed that some people needed support with spending their Time Credits, especially outside the Thanet area, so when Tempo offered a group spend opportunity in London, she and her volunteers eagerly accepted.
Liz, the group’s volunteer Time Credit administrator, suggested a trip on the Thames Clippers that would take them to the Tower of London! All the Time Credit volunteers at The GAP Project were included and they were encouraged to donate any spare Time Credits to include other volunteers, and friends and family. Names were drawn from a hat to fill spaces on the trip.
In the end, a coach full of people of all ages travelled to London from Broadstairs for their Time Credit experience.
‘The group trip was so valuable,’ Kate says.
‘Some of the young people had never been on a boat before or hadn’t travelled much away from Thanet.’
One member of the group, Lisa, said, “It was just my son and I from our family that went on this trip so it was nice to spend some time together doing tours and visiting historic buildings that I visited when I was a child. It brought back many memories, good memories of when I was a child as I was brought up in South East London and was born in Greenwich. I wouldn’t have been able to do a trip to London with my son, due to finances.”
Bringing people together
Lisa enjoyed meeting new people on the trip and getting to know them throughout the day. She is grateful for the Time Credits that were gifted to her. Having volunteered once, Lisa plans to do so again at The Gap Project’s thriving toddler group.
‘It was amazing to see the sense of togetherness’
Kate continues to support The Gap Project volunteers in spending the Time Credits they have earned or been gifted.
If you want to find out about how you can get involved in Time Credits in Kent, get in touch with us