Volunteer Story

This week is Volunteer Week and we want to say


to all our volunteers.

Our volunteer, Angelika, wrote about her experience volunteering at Only Just.

Hi everyone, my name is Angelika and I joined Only Just as a volunteer in October 2017.

Wow, where did those years go?

Originally it was just once a fortnight but I enjoyed it so much I have now been doing a shift once a week.

It is such a bright and positive environment to be in and also to know you are making an important contribution to help those less fortunate than us. I never thought volunteering could be so rewarding in how it makes you feel.

I retired a few years ago after 36 years in the Early Childhood industry. I myself am not an overly social person nor self-confident but, about 6 months after finishing work, I suddenly felt something was missing in my life. Of course the children were the hardest thing to give up as I never had children of my own, but the huge social interaction with parents and co-workers was suddenly gone. One of my best friends, Christine, who most of you have probably met at the shop, suggested coming to volunteer. So this is where it all began and I have never looked back.

Of course, having not grown up with modern technology, mastering the Eftpos terminal, iPad, etc., caused me many stressful moments and anxiety for many months. Then there was the location of items on the system; well, that was another major stress factor, until our manager Cécile came up with the good old SKU codes. What a relief that was, I am sure, for all our volunteers in particular. Put in the SKU number and voilà, there is the correct item, colour ,style, you name it and it's there! It made all our lives so much easier and eliminated so many little annoying mistakes that now no longer had to be rectified.

Getting back to the social aspect, I feel that many of our customers enjoy popping in for a chat while browsing to see what's new in the shop. Believe me, there is always something new. This was another reason to be in the shop more often, to keep up with what's new so that you can help customers should they need it. There are several customers that come in, when I have been there, who I have gotten to know. One lady was thrilled when she discovered we were both born in the same city in Germany and now she could come in occasionally to practice her German, and so it goes. Also many elderly customers just come to browse and enjoy a chat.

So, apart from selling amazingly beautiful items that are mostly handcrafted by incredibly skilled people from all over the world, we also provide a happy and social place for the whole community.

Let's all hope and pray that our current, very surreal worldwide situation comes to an end and that we can trade from the shop as we know best, but in the meantime, please keep supporting the shop through our online shopping site.

Hope to see you all soon for a chat at the shop.

Stay well and take care.


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