How can you help make staff and volunteers’ jobs as easy as possible while supporting the POST Thrift Store?
Staff and volunteers recognize that their job in supporting a non-profit charity and doing the ‘dirty’ work means that there are good days and bad days. But there are days that we all shake our heads and look at each other and ask why? This is not just a POST Thrift Store issue it is an issue for thrift stores in general.
In the spirit of awareness we would like to outline the top 6 – please DO NOTS….
1. Please do not switch prices or remove price tags. – The cashier does not know how to price items and many times they are volunteers, which means they come to specifically do that job. The POST currently has a policy that if there is ‘no tag no sale’ and the item will have to be reprocessed. The reason for this is because not everyone knows how to price every item. Whether or not the removal of a tag is not purposeful or not, having staff stop their job to reprice items disrupts the flow of work being done. If there are items that are wanted, staff or a volunteer will gladly take your name and number and call you when it is priced.
2. Haggling or Negotiation – There is no secret about how items are priced. The items are priced a quarter of the price for the gently used items and then the price goes down from there based on wear and tear. New items are priced at half the value. However, staff and volunteers are compassionate and when crisis situations arise special arrangements can be made for a discount or hold items.
3. No returns or exchanges – Staff and volunteers understand that this can be frustrating. This is done for a few reasons. The thrift store is not unlike any type of used product you might purchase, there can be no guarantee how long the item will work for. All items are tested to ensure they work when they are being processed. The other piece is that it complicates the process at the cash register and puts unnecessary pressure on the cashier.
4. Donating trash, broken and dirty items –unfortunately this happens regularly. The rule of thumb is if you would not give it to a family member or a friend if they needed it, maybe the life of the items has passed and it needs to go to the landfill or be recycled. When items come in that are broken or very dirty (uncleanable) it now puts the non-profit in a position to pay to have it disposed of and this can get very expensive.
5. Leaving Items Outside after store hours – All donations are appreciated at any time. However, when left outside they are left to the elements or the possibility of being stolen arises. There are staff in the store at 8 am every morning preparing for the day. If you donate before the store opens at 10 am, ring the white doorbell located outside of the main doors and we would be happy to help you bring it in.
6. Selecting items before pricing – when items are brought for donation they go to an area in the store that is visible to everyone. Staff or volunteers will not put a price on them for you because all items need to be inspected, cleaned and/or tested before they are sold.
We encourage the general public to have a tour of the store and ask about our processing. If you have any questions, please contact Lisa at The POST by calling (403)527-3026, emailing [email protected], visit our website and our Facebook page or contact us on twitter @CMHA_ASER