A day in the life of a Vinnies volunteer



A full time university student

"When I was a teenager - some 40 years ago - I used to keep my dad company as he delivered food parcels or money to the Vinnies 'customers' (as he used to call them!)."

"I lost my job 2 years ago, and I felt lost. I didn't know what to do with my time and I couldn't find another job. Then my husband suggested volunteering in an op shop!”

Margaret was browsing for some hidden op-shop treasures in Vinnies Epping one day when she heard that a new store had opened in South Morang and they needed staff. “I went to the store and it just felt right. I know that dad would be proud to know that one of his kids is now working for Vinnies.”



A full time retail assistant who volunteers during his spare time

New to the country, Jay has made lots of new friends, who provide support and assistance. “Everyone helps each other when they need it. We’re like a big family” said Jay. “I have learned retail skills and how to work in a team to achieve your goals. I’ve also learned how to adapt and work with people from different backgrounds” said Jay “volunteering at Vinnies South Morang was the best decision in my life and I feel proud to be part of it.”



A keen op-shopper turned Vinnies volunteer

"I love op-shopping and was a regular shopper. One day I approached one of the volunteers behind the counter and said that I was thinking about volunteering. Within minutes I was talking to the manager and other volunteers, and I immediately knew that I had made the right choice. One of the things I love most about volunteering is the different people you meet. There are a lot of older volunteers here and I love that. I love talking to them, hearing their stories and the life experience they offer. It is a volunteer role but you get paid in other ways. The return on your investment is huge: your circle of friends and your community expands and I would say to anyone thinking about volunteering, to just try it!"



A casual lecturer at Melbourne University

“As a casual university lecturer I often have spare time and I wanted to use that to do something to contribute to my local community.  I started looking online at different ways I could do that, when I found the Vinnies website.  I applied online and started volunteering not long after that.  I normally spend my time at Vinnies sorting homewares and clothing donations.  I find it really rewarding when I’ve put something out on the shop floor and then I see someone come in and buy it.  I really like knowing that an item is going to be used and loved by someone new and not just thrown away.”