We are so pleased to introduce Suzanne Trye who is one of our dedicated Vinnies Volunteers!
I met Suzanne for a quick coffee on a Tuesday, a day that she doesn’t normally volunteer. She had a lecture before and after our chat so I was lucky to fit into her busy student schedule. Suzanne is currently a 3rd year student at Victoria University from New Plymouth, who is studying Teaching, Theatre and English.
So, Suzanne, tell me when did you start volunteering at Vinnies?
It must have been a bit over a year ago, about 2 weeks after the shop opened in Kelburn.
Wow, so you have been with the Kelburn shop from the beginning! What made you volunteer?
Well, it was a combination of things. I had been looking for an opportunity to volunteer for a while but often felt a bit too shy to seek out some of the opportunities. Then I found myself often walking past the shop when it opened. When I saw the ‘volunteers needed’ sign I decided to go in and ask about it. Narges, the shop manager, was so lovely and kind that I knew I had made the right decision.
Could you take me through what your average day is like volunteering?
I normally volunteer a few hours on Mondays and Thursdays but can also be available for the occasional Saturday. My day starts when I wake up and I have to go to work babysitting in Karori. When I finish for the morning, I wander back into Kelburn for my Vinnies shift. Narges always greets me and we chat about the day. We then go back and see what types of clothing and donations have come in and we sort through them. Its always exciting to see what has come in. Once we are on top of the new items, I go around the shop tidying up the racks and displays. Of course I also help whenever customers come in as well and I love hearing their interesting stories! When my shift is over, I rush over to Uni for the lectures that I have on. Once those are finished, I go to my second job at an after school program.
That’s a very busy schedule! What keeps you coming back to Vinnies to volunteer?
It’s the people, both the other volunteers and everyone who comes into the shop. Narges calls us part of her volunteer family, and that’s what it feels like!
Do you think you benefit from volunteering?
Definitely! The shop is a great place for me to gain experience with my communication skills which will come in handy when I start teaching.
Would you recommend volunteering to a friend?
Well, I already have! My flatmate volunteers at the Kelburn shop with me!
It was so great to chat with Suzanne who has started to think of her local community and how to help others at this young age. Vinnies is lucky to have such a dedicated student volunteer who really care about every person who comes into the shop.
If you’d like to volunteer, please get in touch with us today by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 04-389-7122 and we will help you find your local Vinnies shop and community.