10 Reasons Working In A Charity Shop Is Great

04:56

Hey there. Apologies for my half-arsed approach to blogging this week. I've been busy trying to knit this cardigan...which I regret starting. Jeez!! Anyway, I thought it was about time I talked about what I do for a job and why it's great :)
I work in a charity shop.

I have to admit that when I was younger, charity shops had a bad rep' for being fuddy duddy, gross and only for the poorest people and I used to hate going in them, I found it embarrassing and wouldn't look at anything, but things have changed. Charities have taken a better approach to the shops and have given them makeovers and done their homework. No longer are they just for last resorts. Charity shops are cool and everyone knows it.
Here is why working in a charity shop is so great (and why you should come and help too!)

Working For A Good Cause
I know this sounds like what I 'should' say but this really is one of the main reasons I love my job. 
I've had other jobs...working behind a bar, making jewellery, shop assistant, selling ink. All of these jobs had pro's and con's but after having a really bad day, you're just there to help line someone else's pockets. When you've had a bad day in this job, you can still think about what you've achieved and how much money you've helped to raise for a good cause. Trust me, it's a much better feeling.

Working With People Who Want To Be There
You wouldn't believe how much difference this makes to the general atmosphere. We have a load of wonderful, quirky, eccentric volunteers who come in because they want to and they all bring something different. They all have different reasons for coming in e.g. personal connection to the charity, wanting to give back, the social aspect, helping boost a CV to get them back into work...
It makes for a different day, every day and generally a fun one.

Every Day Is Different
Different volunteers, different donations, different challenges, different customers... 
You don't really get a 'usual' day in this job and I love that. I'm so quickly bored by routine.
You never know what crazy thing is going to happen or if someone is going to donate a shotgun (true story). It keeps it interesting.

Finding Cool Things
I am very nosey and I love seeing what people bring in. There's always such a weird assortment. Sure, we get a lot of the same-books, crockery, clothes...but there's always something new.
From worn, stained underwear to brand new designer clothes. People bring in the lot.
I love sorting through and finding amazing things to make us a load of money, or for me to buy. It's so fun. Plus, when you get something from our shop, you nearly almost know that no-one else has it!
Discovering music from random CD's you like the look of, can also be pretty cool.

Funny Stories
Some of my funniest stories come from working in these shops and I love it. We've had scary donations, people having sex in changing rooms, fancy dress parties, drunks, dares...
You don't get these kind of stories anywhere, haha.

Learning New Skills
Now, this is handy for people who want to use this job as a way to pursue another (probably better paid) job. There's a surprising amount to be learnt in these shops. We're not just (as someone I'd prefer to forget about called us) tea pushers. First of all, there's education about the particular chairty and an insight into the whole charity sector of retail. Then there's dealing with the general public, volunteers, recently bereaved people, suppliers, events people, fundraising, recycling and skips, first aid, IT; not to mention gift aid and weekly draws.
This is why, when people ask us to look out for a certain book or something, we can forget.

Learning About People's Lives
Some of our volunteers have had such interesting lives and done such cool things, especially the older ones. I find it infuriating that older people get classed together as dull, beige and well-cardigan-ed. 
The person you assume has had the dullest life could've done the most amazing things. I love to hear their stories. It's inspiring and usually hilarious!
This doesn't just go for the volunteers either, but you'll get to know regular customers who are bound to tell you a story or two!

Events
I'm not sure if all charities hold events but I'd say that the majority do and some of them can be pretty fun. We've had skydiving, a colour run, tea parties, fashion shows, walking the great wall of China and loads more. Plus, if you have a cool idea, you can pitch it to fundraising!

A Good Workout
I don't know about you but at the end of a working day, I like to feel worn out. Sitting at a desk all day is my idea of hell. I suppose when you've fully exerted yourself, you know you've done all you can, plus it's cheaper than a gym!

Presents
I know it sounds like a bit of a cheat but you can find the best presents for people in charity shops! You won't have accidently bought the same as someone else and you'll have saved yourself some money (which is good because you won't earn a lot!)


So, there you go. There's my little 'Yey charity shops' post. I hope it's inspired you to at least shop in them more, if not volunteer or work for them. 

Have a great day :)
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