Charity shops “desperate”

New volunteer Rita Wiseman on her first day at Chest, Heart and Stroke
New volunteer Rita Wiseman on her first day at Chest, Heart and Stroke

Charity shops are in “desperate” need of more volunteers according to one support manager.

Regional support manager for Aberdeenshire Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland, Alison Mulligan, has put in the plea after her shop was left drastically understaffed.

The shop on Banchory’s Bridge Street had only 17 hours of volunteering worked last week.

To operate the store on full capacity there needs to be around 60 hours worked.

Alison said: “We opened this shop a year ago and have been in desperate need of volunteers since.

I think everyone across the sector is struggling at the moment, I’m sometimes in contact with other charity stores and they say it is the same story there.”

“We only had three volunteers for the entire week last week and that is a struggle when the shop is open six days a week, it certainly makes the work harder to get done.”

“We’re opening a shop in Ballater soon so that will be another place we’ll need to get volunteers for.”

Alison says changing lifestyles may have an influence: “I think there are a number of reasons for this, the whole pattern of life is changing for many people and people have less time to spare. Everybody is working longer and even pensioners are having to find jobs to make ends meet.”

Her comments come as MPs and MSPs from across Aberdeen city and ‘shire will take to their local Barnardos stores this weekend to encourage people to volunteer there.

MSP Richard Baker will be helping out behind the till in the Barnardos store in Westhill.