Celebrating charity retail in volunteers’ week: our top ten tips

Volunteers’ Week has kicked off to celebrate the people up and down the country who dedicate their time to good causes.

The UK-wide campaign invites individuals and organisations to say thanks to volunteers who are crucial to supporting a number of charities and campaigns. The charity retail sector has more than 230,000 retail volunteers nationwide, and some shops are run entirely by volunteers.

Here are our top ten ways charity shop staff and volunteers can get involved in Volunteers’ Week 2019:

  1. Share your stories – invite volunteers to help create blogs and case studies about their experiences.
  2. Download the Resource Packs created by Volunteers’ Week England and Scotland, which includes tips, guidance and templates on participating.
  3. Host volunteer open days and recruitment drives. Showcase available opportunities and invite potential volunteers to find out more.
  4. Contact local representatives such as councillors or MPs and invite them to the shop so they can see first-hand the work being done by volunteers.
  5. Use social media accounts to spread the word. Get ideas from the official campaign and follow the hashtag #VolunteersWeek for inspiration.
  6. Window displays are another great way of saying thanks. Can you decorate the window for the celebrations?
  7. Get in touch with local media – contact local papers and radio stations to bring their attention to Volunteers’ Week, events and opportunities available in your shop.
  8. Celebrate together with a community lunch or team get together. The Big Lunch organisers, who recently spoke at our Scotland network meeting, provide online resources on organising an event like this.
  9. Collaborate in the community – use the opportunity to strengthen ties with local volunteer centres and councils.
  10. Review your volunteer recruitment strategy. We provide members access to an online forum as well as networking events throughout the year – these can provide good opportunity to discuss best practice.

We would love to see what everyone does to mark #VolunteersWeek this year so please share your stories and photos with us @CharityRetail on Twitter.

Rachel Blair
Public Affairs and Communications Officer (Scotland)
Charity Retail Association