We recently got the chance to have a chat with another fabulous local volunteer! Here's Chetan's story of what he does as a volunteer Shop Assistant at the Red Cross Shop in Blenheim, and why he gives his time in this way:
• What do you do when you volunteer?
The day starts with an update from our manager, Coral and then I make a quick round through the shop and plan a new theme for a day or start rearranging the shop. The manager and my companion Freda give an idea about what's going on in Blenheim. So based on the customer's mentality, we arrange the shop and displays. We try to make the shop as attractive as possible.
• What is your favorite part?
Making a new theme of the week, interacting with the customers, and helping them to get the right product. Another favorite part is reading books from the shelf when we have a bit of spare time. It’s a charity shop so people usually donate good books; we have an amazing collection!
• Why did you start volunteering?
I was jobless due to the COVID19 lockdown. I’m a science-focussed person and it's important to me to do something fruitful so I decided to do a volunteering job to keep myself busy.
• What do you do when you are not volunteering?
I enjoy photography and reading books from the shop.
• What would you say to someone who is thinking about starting volunteering?
Anyone, especially youngsters with ample available time, should do some volunteer job as it joins us to the community and also helps to understand the community. For me, volunteering helped me to better understand Kiwi culture as I am Indian.
• Is there anything else you would like to add?
I think volunteering helps me to keep my mental health during this tough time and it is a good way to socialize. I’m thankful to get an opportunity to work with the Red Cross!
Chetan found his volunteer role at the Red Cross Shop as well as another volunteer role at Rural Youth and Adult Literacy Trust via our website.
If you are feeling inspired by Chetan's story, you can check out all available roles at https://volunteermarlborough.org.nz/volunteer .