Transition San Fernando Valley - Alternative Economy Group

Finding ways of dealing with the current economic crisis proves to be a challenge for so many people. Transition San Fernando Valley decided to come up with a solution and created an alternative economy group in September 2010 called the San Fernando Valley Time Exchange. The group began as a pilot program with a few members on September 1, 2010 and grew to 20 families by the finish of the pilot on February 1, 2011.The results have been encouraging. There is a need for a different type of economy where money is not the basis, but time along with caring and sharing are.

"We are a very warm, positive, and friendly group of eco-conscious folks. We offer free membership, lots of free events and meet at the homes ofour members. The public events offered through Transition SFV are generated by the members of the SFV Time Exchange," wrote Debbie Simpson, SFV Time Exchange - Coordinator

You can also check out their recent Daily News article feature. Here is the link:


Repurposing Old Clothes
Refashioning Clothes event, January, 2011 - Photo by Debbie Simpson
A New Model                         

The SFV Time Exchange is based on the Time Banking model of earning an hour of service for every hour of service given. These hours are known as "Exchange Hours". However, it evolved into something rather unique. It became an alternative economy which fuels the Transition initiative that created it. By keeping the focus of the SFV Time Exchange on sustainable living, it has become a wellspring of activities that is introducing people within the community and beyond to Transition San Fernando Valley. The members found that they have so many skills to offer. Some have even clamored for the opportunity to teach other members in order to earn "Exchange Hours". In addition to member only classes, the group also offers a wide variety of classes and activities open to the public. These public events are known as "Community Building Events" where the SFV Time Exchange members can earn "Exchange Hours" for attending.

What it Can Do

The San Fernando Valley Time Exchange can help learn sustainable skills, create new friendships, save money and improve the quality of their lives. It can foster the creation of a tight-knit community that will be 'resilient' during tough times. Empower each other by sharing the wealth of resources in our community, and by creating a network based on trust.


The San Fernando Valley Time Exchange opened up their membership to the public on February 6, 2011. Members attend monthly potlucks where they engage in fun networking activities in order to offer or request services. They volunteer to help with community service projects. The group offers free membership, lots of free member classes and the opportunity to be part of a skills sharing network.

For more details, visit

Seed exchange  Mulching

Photos: (left) 1st Annual Spring Seed and Recipe Swap on 2/12/11 and (right) Permaculture Discovery Series - Landscape Design (Session 2) on 2/13/11- Photos by Debbie Simpson (thanks!)












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