Gill recently gave two days of volunteering in our Bramley Retail Hub through her workplace, Co-Operative Bank. She shares her experience:
“I’m Gill from the Co-Operative Bank and I recently swapped my day job in recruitment and volunteered at St Gemma’s Hospice’s Retail Hub in Bramley, Leeds for two days.
The St Gemma’s Retail Hub sorts donated items ready to be distributed amongst their 25 charity shops across West Yorkshire or sold on eBay or other online channels.
On arrival, l had a warm welcome and an enlightening tour of the Hub from ecommerce manager, Cherie. There is an eBay team who sift through potentially valuable items that they think they may be able to list and re-sell to maximise the amount a donation makes towards patient care – such as various collectible items of bric a brac, jewellery, furniture, designer clothing and electricals.
Then there are team members who sell items on other ecommerce platforms, coordinate St Gemma’s Christmas cards, sift through general bric-a-brac and who sort through items of clothing generously donated by Joe Browns to support the Hospice. There are also PAT testers to ensure the safety of electrical items including Christmas trees, stereos, gaming consoles etc., that are intended for resale. It really is an interesting place and a hive of activity!
I was then introduced to Dave, Andrew and Steve who are regular and dedicated volunteers on the book team and whom I worked with for two days. I really enjoyed working with these guys, plus they fuelled my productivity with a constant flow of tea which was good.
A continual stream of books is donated daily by the public, often surpassing what can be stored and sold in St Gemma’s charity shops, so lots of the books are sold via online platforms.
I was tasked with scanning or typing in the ISBN code on the back of each book. We also looked out for any books that appeared potentially valuable; these were passed over to eBay Team for them to research and list on eBay. The eBay team are currently listing a donated copy of The Hobbit from 1959!
I scanned a grand total of 1461 books – it was quite addictive!
The two days went really fast and I really enjoyed myself. If anybody is looking to volunteer in Yorkshire, I would highly recommend spending time at St Gemma’s. They are a fantastic team of hardworking and friendly individuals, who are dedicated to making a meaningful impact and will always welcome volunteers.”
If your workplace offers volunteering hours, come and spend them with us! Pop our team an email on firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.