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Trading Times is an online service that matches carers with local businesses for flexible paid work. It is free to carers and paid for on a transactional basis by employers.
Trading Times provides carers with access to opportunities to earn, the ability to retain and develop work skills, stay connected with society and maintain a sense of self-worth. It is aimed at the over 50’s, family carers and single parents. The Trading Times service was piloted in Barnet and is currently being extended service across London and beyond from New Year 2014.
The prototype for Trading Times was developed as part of a joint competition, run by the Design Council and the Department of Health, to find teams of designers and experts who could develop new ideas to help improve the lives of those affected by dementia.
The video below highlights the benefits of Trading Times.
An estimated 670,000 people in the UK now care for someone with dementia. One study found that over half provide more than 35hours of informal care each week.
The costs to them are significant with 72% worse off financially and many struggling to make ends meet.
Carers also face reduced opportunities to work and earn income forcing many to reduce their working hours or give up work entirely.
Using the Trading Times service carers complete a simple profile describing their work skills and enter the number of hours they think they can work. A local community manager welcomes every new carer with a telephone call to help them on their way. Employers either post short job adverts or search for local carers with relevant profiles.