Get busier of course.
I recently started volunteering at my local RSPCA shop on a Saturday. Volunteering is something I have always wanted to do but never really acted upon. I tried to volunteer as a student but shops were reluctant to take on students due to many being unreliable.
Where I lived with my parents there were no charity shops but now I have moved to an area where charity shops come in abundance. Naturally I went for the charity that meant the most to me. I love animals and the RSPCA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) is a brilliant charity and the largest animal welfare charity in the UK.
Many people may ask why a full-time employed young woman would want to give up her Saturdays to work behind a till for free. I had my own reasons for doing this and I have also discovered some new reasons which I would like to share with you.
Five reasons to volunteer
- Help others – This is the most obvious reasons. It is a great feeling knowing you are doing something to help others or a good cause. Volunteering does not feel like a job. If anything it reduces stress and can be both mentally and physically rewarding.
- Meet new people – This is one of the main reasons I wanted to volunteer. My current job means I am quite often sat at a desk all week in a small office seeing the same people every day. At the shop I am constantly meeting new people and developing my people skills which is always very important. Also, as I have just moved, I am getting to meet local people and find out what is happening in my neighbourhood.
- First dibs – Charity shops are great because stock changes every week and you have no idea what kind of gems are going to turn up. We get so many bags on a Saturday alone and we have to quickly check them over and price them before they go straight on the shelves. Good gems go quick. There have already been several occasions when I have put something out and five minutes later someone is at the till with it. As you check the stock you get to see what comes in first and if you like it you can buy it. So far I have purchased a large cup for Tom.
- New skills – I have already mentioned people skills but if you are a young person looking to develop your employability skills then volunteering can provide lots of opportunities, from event organising to numeracy. Working the till has definitely tested my numeracy skills.
- Use your time wisely – I ask myself sometimes what would I be doing if I was not at the shop. Firstly I would have probably stayed in bed longer and secondly, unless I have an event to go to in which case they are very flexible, I would probably just be sitting at home watching TV, wasting electricity. I feel like I am actually spending my weekends doing something which also makes them go slower and I start the following week feeling like I have had a nice, rewarding break.