Sharing Is Caring For This Silver Spring Resident
Mary Murphy is a longtime Silver Spring resident. She moved to the Silver Spring/Wheaton area almost 30 years ago and has witnessed the area’s growth and redevelopment.
She describes Silver Spring as having “a big city feel, but also a small town feel.”
After volunteering for a nonprofit called The Center For A New American Dream, an organization that promotes community and ecological sustainability, Murphy decided to put in practice their mission in Silver Spring.
She is the founder of Silver Spring Shares– a grassroots organization that connects people in Silver Spring to share their skills and resources.
“The goal is to … figure out ways to share our time and resources with each other,” Murphy said.
The organization is made of volunteers, but anyone who lives, works and plays in Silver Spring can participate. According to Murphy, joining Silver Spring Shares is free but the person must attend an orientation session to learn more about services, the community, meet neighbors, and understand how to swap, offer, or receive services from the Silver Spring Timebank.
Whether it’s a car ride, community gardening, book swap or offering babysitting services, the timebank is for everyone. But Murphy adds, “There’s no money involved.”
“I might offer to someone services and gain a service from someone totally different,” Murphy said.
Silver Spring Shares was born out of the need Murphy saw to increase “sharing in our community.” She said she put a call out and right away people begin to offer to help.
“I decided that maybe Silver Spring should host a share fest,” Murphy said.
The share fest took place in 2014 at the Fenton Street Market, and with the help of other organizations Murphy was able to start a website, found space for orientations and other meetings. All free of charge.
“Right away they [organizations and volunteers] were just tremendous,” she said.
To Murphy Silver Spring Shares is a unique way to get people what they need.
“You’re building resilience in your community … Those are all outcomes that are wonderful,” she said.
Residents can check out the Share Map or email email@example.com to find out more.