Our new office manager, Chris, has been kind enough to write about his experience joining the Scrapstore, in the first of an occasional series of blogs.
I recently found myself standing in a field full of tents at a music festival in Stratford-Upon-Avon removing the plastic tops off 2 litre milk bottles and putting them carefully in my rucksack pockets. What has caused such bizarre behaviour? Had I become a New age scavenger? Fallen on my luck and found a bottle top exchange bank that offers me cash for the plastic bottle tops?
No, nothing so bizarre, merely the behavioural change that has come about as a side effect of my starting work at the Work and play Scrapstore 3 months ago. This was my first foray into the Charity sector, volunteer sector and also the re-use/recycling sector so I had no idea what to expect. Friends and my brother had insisted that I would find it different from my previous roles in the commercial sector.
My original interview at the Scrapstore had given me an indication that this was a different work culture to what I was used to. The People are different - volunteers all (except myself) the Scrapstore is a hive of energy, innovation, hard work and ideas.
On a Tuesday the place comes alive and has a buzz of excitement . Unlike many of my previous jobs there is a sense of excitement. at the possibilities that present themselves with every new donation of materials. The volunteers all have their specialist skills and areas of input but share the common ethos of the Scrap and re-use culture.
Friendly and helpful, the interaction between the individuals is wonderful and the usual settling in period when one joins a new company and feels lonely and outside was virtually non-existent.
Every Volunteer involved in the Scrapstore that I met made me feel like I had known them for years and made me feel so welcome. It really is like a big family.
I find the skills assembled in the individuals involved are as varied as the materials we are able to supply to our members. Administrators, supplies and materials experts, creative individuals, and much more besides. The overall value of the combined experience far outweighs any single individual.
Much of my time to date has been in the preparation of the databases and the Membership Data base in preparation for the membership renewals due in August.
My immersion into the scrapstore ethos and culture has been subtle but definite. The behaviour in the festival field repeats itself in my everyday life as I save for re-use and evangelise about the possibilities to anyone will listen.
- Chris, Work and Play Scrapstore Office Manager