Ideally how long should you work in a charity shop?

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Anonymous #1
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I start my first volunteer job tomorrow. 10-5 on Tuesday and Thursday at a charity shop. However, sometime this year i’d also like to get a paying job for the first time. How long do you think i should stay? I was thinking 3-4 months. I’d probably leave in March, April or June. Or is that too soon? I did ask family members and friends but they said that’s too long?
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softoxl
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No clue why it posted anonymously lmao
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bones-mccoy
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How long you say will depend on how long it takes you to find a paying job. You may plan to get one in 3/4 months but end up having to wait considerably longer.
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softoxl
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(Original post by bones-mccoy)
How long you say will depend on how long it takes you to find a paying job. You may plan to get one in 3/4 months but end up having to wait considerably longer.
I didn’t mean i plan on finding a paying job within that time frame. I meant that’s how long i plan to volunteer for.
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monkeyman0121
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Stay until you get a job. You could get a recommendation/reference from your manager.
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pereira325
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Well I mean you are putting in a lot of hours for free really. 10-5. Have you asked about your breaks/ lunch-break. They might work you hard too (aka kind of abusing it). But I mean that's 14 hours a week free. Which even at say £4 an hour is £56 a week you are contributing. That's assuming well below an adult minimum wage, but just giving the numbers for understanding.

When you note down (or atleast when I do and from what I've seen other people do) work experience/ voluntary work I don't note down what hours I worked/ how many hours I worked but rather just the duration/length of the work.
So I would say Jan 2018- March 2018 Volunteering at Cancer Research

If you're doing this out of the goodness of your heart, then, I guess the hours (opportunity cost) given don't matter too much.

Honestly though, I think you would be best seeing if you can cut down the hours. If you're young you kinda don't have a lot of money and giving away that much time for free (it's definitely not in holidays cos Jan?). How old are you?
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bones-mccoy
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(Original post by softoxl)
I didn’t mean i plan on finding a paying job within that time frame. I meant that’s how long i plan to volunteer for.
The longer you stay, the better it looks and the better your reference will be. The more experience the better.
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softoxl
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(Original post by pereira325)
Well I mean you are putting in a lot of hours for free really. 10-5. Have you asked about your breaks/ lunch-break. They might work you hard too (aka kind of abusing it). But I mean that's 14 hours a week free. Which even at say £4 an hour is £56 a week you are contributing. That's assuming well below an adult minimum wage, but just giving the numbers for understanding.

When you note down (or atleast when I do and from what I've seen other people do) work experience/ voluntary work I don't note down what hours I worked/ how many hours I worked but rather just the duration/length of the work.
So I would say Jan 2018- March 2018 Volunteering at Cancer Research

If you're doing this out of the goodness of your heart, then, I guess the hours (opportunity cost) given don't matter too much.

Honestly though, I think you would be best seeing if you can cut down the hours. If you're young you kinda don't have a lot of money and giving away that much time for free (it's definitely not in holidays cos Jan?). How old are you?
I’m 17. I don’t really mind not getting paid as i am really only doing it for experience. I have had a trial there and there’s 2 other volunteers and 1 actual paid employee. During the trial i ended up staying for an extra 2 hours because it was hectic and they needed help as one of the volunteers was struggling alone. I didn’t get a break throughout the 4 hours i was there. Also when i was there the volunteers only got a break once during the day and that was it. I doubt they got a second break when i left as there was only an hour until it closed. Initially i did ask them if i could just do a morning shift on Tuesday and an afternoon shift on Friday but they told me i could do 10-5 on 2 days instead.
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softoxl
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Thank you!
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pereira325
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(Original post by softoxl)
I’m 17. I don’t really mind not getting paid as i am really only doing it for experience. I have had a trial there and there’s 2 other volunteers and 1 actual paid employee. During the trial i ended up staying for an extra 2 hours because it was hectic and they needed help as one of the volunteers was struggling alone. I didn’t get a break throughout the 4 hours i was there. Also when i was there the volunteers only got a break once during the day and that was it. I doubt they got a second break when i left as there was only an hour until it closed. Initially i did ask them if i could just do a morning shift on Tuesday and an afternoon shift on Friday but they told me i could do 10-5 on 2 days instead.
Okay. That's good.
Can I ask how you get 10-5pm on 2 week-days free? Like, are you on a gap year?
Yeah, I guess you appreciate then that is how the job is going to be pretty much- hectic and tiring! So it's up to you to figure how much of that you can handle with the reward being experience.
As an fyi, I got my first job without any work experience (over the summer of my 1st year of uni, so I was 19 - and still am, lol).
I feel like with a job like this the experience element is useful but you'll learn a lot experience diminishing returns pretty quick. So I would say about 3 months is an ideal amount as it shows you are reliable, can stick around, and have experience, which is probably what employers are looking for when you want a paid job in the future.
Personally I wish you goodluck as you are doing a good thing but it wasn't for me and it is not essential for getting a paid job as hopefully I've showcased a little. It will help in an interview though surely for a paid job as you can refer back to what you did
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Emma:-)
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I start my first volunteer job tomorrow. 10-5 on Tuesday and Thursday at a charity shop. However, sometime this year i’d also like to get a paying job for the first time. How long do you think i should stay? I was thinking 3-4 months. I’d probably leave in March, April or June. Or is that too soon? I did ask family members and friends but they said that’s too long?
You can stay as long or as little as you like.
How long you say will depend on how long it takes you to find a paying job. You could still keep it on alongside a job if work shifts allow.
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Notoriety
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Leave as soon as you get a job. There's no point staying around owing to a feeling that you owe them something -- it is not like other charities where they spend a lot of time and use up a lot of resources to train you up. E.g. Citizens Advice.
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softoxl
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(Original post by pereira325)
Okay. That's good.
Can I ask how you get 10-5pm on 2 week-days free? Like, are you on a gap year?
Yeah, I guess you appreciate then that is how the job is going to be pretty much- hectic and tiring! So it's up to you to figure how much of that you can handle with the reward being experience.
As an fyi, I got my first job without any work experience (over the summer of my 1st year of uni, so I was 19 - and still am, lol).
I feel like with a job like this the experience element is useful but you'll learn a lot experience diminishing returns pretty quick. So I would say about 3 months is an ideal amount as it shows you are reliable, can stick around, and have experience, which is probably what employers are looking for when you want a paid job in the future.
Personally I wish you goodluck as you are doing a good thing but it wasn't for me and it is not essential for getting a paid job as hopefully I've showcased a little. It will help in an interview though surely for a paid job as you can refer back to what you did
I need to finish one more year of college but decided to take a break due to personal problems. That’s why i can work during 2 working days. Initially i was going to find a paid job but in my area, sadly, the only jobs available prefer people with experience. & Thank you! all the best at uni.
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