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Health Creation through a Welsh Currency

Prevention and Wellbeing as a Basis for Economic Wealth

Since the old ages it is known that an unhappy mind creates an unhappy body.  The more poverty and unemployment abound, the more sickness results and sick leave and suicide are the consequences.

This proposal suggests that a ‘regional currency’ can be used by Health Authorities in Powys and Wales in order to

¨       Pay for services that cannot be offered due to lack of Sterling

¨       Enable patients to purchase preventive measures that they can not afford

¨       Care for the elderly in a way that entitles future generations to benefit.

The Western Mail published on June 18th 2003 that the rate of breast cancer is higher in Wales than in the rest of the UK.  Mindful of the links between poverty, unhappiness and health, the Wales Assembly of Women has put a regional currency for Wales on its agenda with the following goals:

1.      to find partnership organisations for the education in the requirements and benefits of a regional currency

2.      to co-operate with organisations that initiate the mechanisms for a regional currency as an on-going learning process

3.      to set up monitoring procedures that measure the impact of a regional currency on people’s health.

The Wales Institute of Community Currencies at the Centre for Community and Lifelong Learning of the University of Wales College, Newport has already been appointed as ‘expert guardians’ with not only experience on the ground but also access to academic knowledge.

A first Money, Money, Money event has already demonstrated the problems of our current monetary system and complementary currencies as a solution. 

Close cooperation in the design and the use of a ‘Welsh Pound’ as regional currency is now desirable to prevent the disastrous effects of the Euro that are experienced on the continent.

As a ‘road map’, the document was written in October 2001 and distributed to all Assembly Members. It is now recommended to

¨       develop the right ‘monetary medium’ for the right health purpose

a.       time credits can be recorded for voluntary caring

b.      publicly created money can be issued by public Health Authorities

c.       mutually created money can be administered through ‘passbooks’

¨       share the evidence and testimonials from experiences of the past ten years

a.       health credits in Japan are the most popular device to compensate for the lack of finance in public health services

b.      LETS and mental health is a program that enabled mental health users to get additional care through Local Exchange Trading Systems

¨       build on the experiences gained world-wide and apply best practices to the Health Services in Powys and Wales: a first conference on Health Creation and Wealth Creation will be organised by the Wales Assembly of Women on September 20th.

Contact: Eluned Hurn, Chairperson, Wales Assembly of Women, Tel. 01874 711 382
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