‘Oxfam has given me my life back’

Last year Oxfam International helped 22 million people around the world.  But Oxfam’s work begins right here in Scotland, with our network of 46 shops raising vital funds for Oxfam’s life-saving work. 

Shop manager Amanda Sneddon and deputy manager Sheena Dickson from Oxfam in Penicuik have caught up with one of their volunteers Lynsey Henderson to find out about what volunteering with Oxfam means to her.  Lynsey is 23 years old and has volunteered in the Oxfam Penicuik shop for a year and a half. 

Lynsey’s story is worth a read – Oxfam helps people both around the world and at home.

What do you enjoy about volunteering?

Volunteering makes you feel good.  It has helped me gain confidence and given me a purpose.

Due to my lack of confidence, at first, I would only work through the back of the shop.  Now I am happy to be on the till and talk with customers.  I enjoy sorting out the CD and DVDs as well as helping to steam the clothes and accept new donations.  I am in the process of learning about gift aid and gaining confidence in asking donors if they would like to sign up for gift aid.

I also like the chit-chat and I have learned so many new things through all the interesting donations.

What made you want to become a volunteer?

I was very quiet and shy and found it difficult to leave the house without someone being with me.  Someone suggested that volunteering may help me gain confidence – and it has!

What is the most interesting or unique donation you have discovered?

I like to find anything that has Westie dogs on it.

What would you say to anyone thinking about volunteering?

If you are shy about it, don’t worry, it is easier than you think.  I want to shout out about the benefits of volunteering and how much it has helped my confidence.  I am now able to do things, like make phone calls, which I found too difficult before. Oxfam has given me my life back.

Find out more about volunteering with Oxfam here.