Switzerland/Gros-de-Vaud has its own local exchange system

Published on 28/02/2024 | La rédaction


The network enables people to forge links by promoting a non-market economy. Born on Thursday, the Echallens SEL joins a community of some ten other SELs in Vaud.

"To barter, you need two people who want to exchange two goods of roughly equal value at the same time. So it's necessarily limited... It's to solve this problem that we're proposing the creation of the SEL du Gros-de-Vaud this evening."

A few moments after Marc Johannot's explanations, the Système d'échange local du district central du canton was born last Thursday in Échallens. It joins a community of around ten other SELs in the canton and some fifty in Switzerland.

"At SEL, the link counts more than the good."

Marc Johannot, first president of SEL Gros-de-Vaud

A SEL is a platform on which members of associations can make available and/or find goods, services and know-how. To overcome the shortcomings of bartering, these are exchanged for fake money, in this case "nuggets". "In other LETS, we like to say that the link counts more than the good", Marc Johannot illustrated.

Speaking of nuggets, the list of services offered on some SEL websites is worth a look. The first elected president of SEL Gros-de-Vaud spotted someone collecting orphaned gloves, someone making available 250m2 of hay to mow yourself, or someone offering to... help with funeral arrangements!

Covid puts the brakes on

Usually, we're more into lending tools or looking for a helping hand," laughs Marylène. But as long as we stay within the legal framework, the only limit is your imagination!" This committee member ofUnYverSEL, the Yverdon-based SEL founded in 2013, notes, however, that the concept has been held back by Covid. "We have around seventy members, but people are finding it hard to rediscover the desire to meet up."

The concept was invented in Canada in 1980 under the name Local Exchange Trading System. It arrived in France in 1994, where there are now over 500 SELs. The statutes adopted on Thursday evening in Échallens specify that the SEL is "a convivial network for forging social links, promoting know-how and fostering a local non-market economy".

With neighboring SELs

The annual membership fee has been set at 20 fr. (30 fr. for couples) and as the Gros-de-Vaud SEL will be joining the selensemble.ch platform, its members will also be able to make available or benefit from offers on the sites of neighboring SELs. Finally, optional meetings will be organized every one or two months, always on the 22nd, because it takes two to make an exchange...

Source: www.24heures.ch/

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