Pairing a family that needs a part-time housekeeper with a semi-retiree keen on housekeeping and looking for flexible work options - that is one of the possible matches a new online platform is offering.
Called BlockPooling.sg, it is open to residents across Singapore who want to earn extra income by providing services to their neighbours.
The idea is to look beyond town centres and into neighbours' homes to match those who have local service needs with those who can more easily and conveniently provide these services within the neighbourhood.
Since going live on Wednesday, there have already been more than 50 users offering services from hourly housekeeping to "Internet fixing", and even local bike tours, said BlockPooling.sg chief executive Moh Hon Meng.
"There are many services that we require that would best be provided by people living near us.
"Hourly housekeeping is an excellent example. There is a huge demand for it from singles and families who do not want to hire a live-in foreign domestic worker.
"They would love to hire an 'auntie' who lives nearby to clean their homes for about four hours twice a week," said Mr Moh. "For the auntie, she can make the current market rate of $12.50 per hour, which is $50 for four hours."
Other neighbourhood services in demand include baby-sitting, dog-walking, clothes alteration, car caring, errand-running, confinement care, eldercare, personal training, cooking services, tuition, beauty services, and various kinds of instruction.
Ms Foo Mee Har, grassroots adviser and MP for West Coast GRC, plans to leverage on this to build a local marketplace of services for her residents.
She notes that it would cater to the "many residents in the neighbourhood" who have given feedback about wanting "flexi-work opportunities that help supplement their family income".
Such matching up of neighbours would also improve interaction and bonding between them, said Ms Foo.
The website was set up with a $20,000 grant from the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre, said Mr Moh.
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