My Experience Volunteering In A Charity Shop

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I’ve been volunteering at a charity shop for a while now and I thought I would share with you my experience. I first started to volunteer at the charity shop as I wanted to find a work experience placement with college. I wanted to learn new skills and gain more experience in the working environment. I am known as a Retail Volunteer as I volunteer in one of the charities shops.

I volunteer at the shop once a week for a couple of hours. At the shop I do lots of different tasks both with customers and in the stock room. To begin with I might help sort through lots of the donations we have been given; I go through each bag making sure we only price items which are in good condition. The donations we get range from clothes to books, accessories and lots more.

I will then go through all of the clothing items we can sell and put each one on a clothing hanger and put the correct sizing cube on each hanger too. I make sure that each item is priced before putting each item out on the shop floor.

Another job I do is stock rotation this is where we bring stock from the shop floor back into the stock room to create more space for more recent items to be put out.

I sometimes may research the donations the shop gets so that we can tell customers more about the product for example old books or cameras.

To begin with I helped to make the shops window displays. I now create some of the window displays by myself. We base each window display design on a theme for example orange and gold or we might do a window display based around a current event like the World Cup or a season like the Christmas season.

When making the window displays I first try and find a main item or piece of clothing that stands out to me I then work with other items to create the feel and look I want the display to have.

Here I am finding clothes for my window display design I am also dressing the mannequin in the clothing I have chosen.

One of the very first window displays I created was based on the colours orange, cream and gold. This was because I had found a lovely orange dress I wanted to put into the window I then found cream and gold items that worked really well with the orange.

When creating window displays I not only have to find clothing for the mannequins but also accessories to go with the items of clothing. For example jewellery,shoes and belts.

I also make bric a brac window displays. This could be making a window display for a upcoming  sport event like Wimbledon. To create a window display based on this theme I may use tennis balls and tennis rackets with tennis shoes. I may also add some books about the sport into the display.

Here is a window display design I am starting to make based around Wimbledon 2018.

I made a window display based around The World Cup 2018.

Here are some photos of my window display based around The Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. I steamed a wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses as well as finding bric a brac items for the display too.

Lastly I have just recently started serving customers at the till independently!

I would definitely recommend volunteering at a charity shop if you are interested in working in retail or you want to work in the fashion industry. I also think you would enjoy volunteering in a charity shop enjoy if you like being creative and love fashion.

Animal Care Volunteer: Down On The Farm

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Through my love of animals which started when I was little as well as  how animals have helped me with my mental health. I decided I wanted to do volunteering with animals.

I now volunteer once a week at a farm as an Animal Care Volunteer. The farm I go to has lots of different types of animals. From Alpacas, Goats and Llamas to Guinea pigs, Hamsters, Rats and Rabbits to name a few. We also sometimes get to look after reptiles such as snakes, geckos and skinks.

Well Hello .

The farm works with children, young people and adults to build up their confidence and self-esteem through working to care for a variety of animals. Children and young people  who come here maybe home educated, have mental health conditions or found mainstream school hard  to name a few.

When I was looking at different places I could volunteer at this place taught my eye as they had worked with other young people with mental health conditions. I thought this place would be fantastic as we get to work with animals in a more therapeutic environment. I felt that I could help give back to other young people  and show them how much joy animals can bring into your life and help you to be more positive. Animals don’t just help   them to forget about difficult things  but sometimes helps them to process things as the animals are making them feel relaxed and safe.

Throughout the day on the farm I do a number of different tasks to care for all the animals on the farm.  Here are some of the tasks I do.

Cleaning out hutches,cages and fields. I put down fresh hay in all the animals hutches, cages and shelters. Giving all the animals fresh water in their water bottles and bowls and topping them up regularly throughout the day.

Mucking out the ponies field.

Refilling the rabbits water bottles.

Sometimes I groom the goats, ponies and the dog. We also take the goats and ponies out of their main field and take them for walks around the farm so that they have new things to explore and they love it !, The goats love to try and eat the leaves too.

I help to prepare all the animals food as well as giving it to them when it is feeding time.

Grating carrot to put into the rabbits food.

Dinner Time for the rabbits.

Feeding Obama the Llama.

Can I have more food as I’m just so adorable ?!

Finally a big thing we try to do is do as much animal handling as possible this is not just because the animals need to have human interaction but sometimes children and young people come to the farm to do animal handling sessions here the children and young people learn all about the animals.

I absolutely love volunteering on the farm and would highly recommend volunteering not only is it good to put on your CV but you get to learn new things about yourself. You get to see if you prefer learning through doing or more sitting down and writing.

If you are aged between 14-25 you can log your hours of volunteering you do on the website : http://www.vinspired.com , by doing this you will get certificates for the number of hours you do . You can show these certificates in any interviews you may have from college course interviews to internships, work experience placements and jobs.

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