Friday, 22 July 2011

Places: Charity Shops.

Charity shops- old, shabby shops full of stinky clothes nobody wants. Right...Wrong! Well, mostly. Although the old view of charity shops, being rather dingy and dark places is rarely considered to be the norm, people just couldn't be more wrong. Nowadays, charity shops are revamping to keep up with modern times, still keeping the charitable ethos, but with a trend-set and clean shops, with helpful and knowledgable staff members. 
Then again, I may be slightly biased. My local town does have fourteen charity shops in three streets...might be biased there.
So, here is the complication of my reasons and opinions as to why I think CHARITY SHOPS are good.


1. Everything is "as cheap as chips"...if not, you're not in a REAL charity shop.

2. They're like a treasure trove for unique and mysterious objects. UFO's- Unidenitified funny objects.

3. Volunteer work at a charity shop is easy to get, and looks great on the old CV!

4. You find some true hidden gems in charity shops- it's certainly worth the rummage.

5. Flea Markets and Thrift Stores are hipster cool, and you know it.

6. Buying second-hand goods, particularly clothing is very eco-friendly. It prevents a great increase in the amount of stock thrown into landfil sites each year.

7. I bought a vintage copy of 'Alice In Wonderland/Alice Through the Looking Glass' for a mere 50p in a local hospice charity shop. I don't mean to brag...but I really do.

8. A friend of mine once found a bag in a charity shop. But not just any old bag. A bag made out of a coconut...which had a face painted on it. Amazing.

9. Many vintage, good-quality items are hidden amongst lesser goods, but priced similarly. Although you're cheatin the charity shop a little, keep it to yourself, and celebrate later.

10. Which ever country you go into- there will be a charity shop/thrift store/flea market. Almost definately.

11. It's a great sense of satisfaction when you find a great quality item at an even greater price.

12. Many items (of all kinds, books, records, clothes, etc) are in great quality- some infact better than the stock you would buy new in a shop (some people shop like animals in particular names...PRIMARK).

13. I once found a (perfectly working) disposable camera in a charity shop for 19p...go me.

14. Let's face it, going mad and rummaging around in lots of clothes and pretty things is just fun. Particularly for magpie-types like myself.

15. 99% of my record collection consists of charity shop finds. Of that I am rather proud.

16. Not only do charity shops support the charities in which they fund raise for, but provide jobs for the elderly, students and many rehabilitating criminals.

17. Why spend £billion on a book when you could pick it up for £1 in a charity shop? Great for blind-buying.

18. Let's face it- the most basic principle of charity shops is that they are CHEAP. So you can shop until you drop (not literally, please).

19. When I worked at a charity shop I got free cake, WINNER.

20. Most importantly, that sense of wellbeing you get that you are actually giving something to charity- even if, frankly, you are ripping them off a bit.


1. A charity shop, thrift shop, thrift store, hospice shop (U.S., Canada), resale shop (when not meaning consignment shop [U.S.]) or op shop (Australia/N.Z.) (from "opportunity shop") is a retail establishment run by a charitable organization to raise money.

2. Charity shops are a type of social enterprise.

3. They usually sell mainly second-hand goods donated by members of the public, and are often staffed by volunteers.

4. Because the items for sale were obtained for free, and business costs are low, the items can be sold at competitive prices.

5. After costs are paid, all remaining income from the sales is used in accord with the organization's stated charitable purpose.

6. Charity shops are often popular with people who are frugal. In the United States, shopping at a charity store has become popular enough to earn a slang term: thrifting.

7. Environmentalists may prefer buying second-hand goods as this uses fewer natural resources and would appear do less damage to the environment than by buying new goods would, in part because the goods are usually collected locally.

8. Reusing second-hand items is a form of recycling, and thus reduces the amount of waste going to landfill sites.

9. People who oppose sweat shops often purchase second-hand clothing as an alternative to supporting clothing companies with dubious ethical practices.

10. Second-hand goods are considered to be quite safe. The South Australian Public Health Directorate says that the health risk of buying used clothing is very low. It explains that washing purchased items in hot water is just one of several ways to eliminate the risk of contracting infectious diseases.

11. Some charity shops, such as the British Heart Foundation, also sell a range of new goods which may be branded to the charity, or have some connection with the cause the charity supports. Oxfam stores, for example, sell fair trade food and crafts.

12. Some stores specialise in selling books, music, or bridalwear.

13. The first Oxfam charity shop in the United Kingdom was established in Broad Street, Oxford, and began trading in December 1947 (although the shop itself did not open until February 1948). Oxfam opened some of the first charity shops.

14. There is also evidence that the Wolverhampton Society for the Blind (now called the Beacon Centre for the Blind) opened up a shop in Wolverhampton in 1899 to sell goods made by blind people to raise money for the Society.

15. Oxfam has the largest number of charity shops in the UK with over 700 stores. Many Oxfam shops also sell books, and the organization now operates over 70 specialist Oxfam Bookshops, making them the largest retailer of second-hand books in Britain. Other Oxfam affiliates also have stores, such as Jersey, Germany, Ireland (45 shops in NI/ROI), the Netherlands and Hong Kong.

16. Other charities with a strong presence on high streets in the UK include YMCA, British Heart Foundation, Barnardos, Cancer Research UK, Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, Age UK (formerly Age Concern and Help the Aged), Oxfam, Save the Children, Scope and Sue Ryder Care. Many local hospices also operate charity shops to raise funds.

17. There are over 9,000 charity shops in the UK and Republic of Ireland. Their locations can be found on the Charity Retail Association (CRA) website, along with information on charity retail, what shops can and can't accept, etc. The CRA is a member organisation for charities which run shops.

18. British charity shops are mainly staffed by unpaid volunteers, with a paid shop manager.

19. Goods for sale are predominantly from donations - 87% according to the official estimate.

20. 'Standard' charity shops sell a mix of clothing, books, music and bric-a-brac (like cutlery and ornaments). Some shops specialise in certain areas, like vintage clothing, furniture, electrical items, or records.


1. Charity
2. Retail
3. Marketing
4. Animals
5. Children
6. Homeless
7. Salvation Army
8. Cancer Research
9. Clothes
10. Thrift
11. Objects
12. Books
13. Music
14. Unusual
15. Smell
16. Rehabilitation
17. Volunteering
18. Service
19. Vintage
20. Furniture

(In response to the previously posted question 'Survey: Do you like to buy things from charity shops, or jumble sales?' by A Knight In Shining Armour, via Yahoo Answers.)

1. Charity shops yes all the time, saves money and sometimes I even sell decent quality Levi jeans I buy in the charity shop on Ebay and make a bit of money (sssshhh). We don't have "jumble sales" in Ireland but I went to a few in the UK and it was mostly crappy stuff- Trust me I'm a Doctor <3, via Yahoo Answers.

2. Some of the best vintage stuff comes from charity shops and jumble sales.

in the village near to my home, they hold a bi-weekly jumble sale, and you literally have to fight off the grannies from the things you are holding.

they are vicious!- Instamatikk, via Yahoo Answers.

3. I buy and donate goods all the time Mark. When donating goods, I prefer to give to the smaller charities than the larger ones hoping that maybe they'll be able to make good use of any of the revenue they obtain- mistydawnchorus, via Yahoo Answers.

4. Haha yes! I got a formal dress at a thrift store for like $20, new. No joke! It would have been several hundred dollars in a retail store...- horsechic1990, via Yahoo Answers.

5. Those are the best places to find something good! you can seriously do a lot with thrift stores and save money! I don't get why people get too offended to go in there...who cares what people think?- girl., via Yahoo Answers.

6. I love doing that!
Sometimes you find some really vintage stuff in there
and small pieces like lace dresses from the 60s add to my original sassy look ;)- Cloudy(:, via Yahoo Answers.

7. I like to buy things from charity shops! I was in Help the Aged yesterday, some good stuff in there to be honest widja- mary juana, via Yahoo Answers.

8. Charity shops- ......., via Yahoo Answers.

9. Yes both regularly- Happy Murcia, via Yahoo Answers.

10. Depends what it is
if its something for a party then maybe
i've never bought things from a charity shop- Mimii, via Yahoo Answers.

11. I often look in the charity shops,and i buy odd things,now and then- RaM RaDaR, via Yahoo Answers.

12. Love finding a treasure amongst the trash!!!!- Sherry Falcor F, via Yahoo Answers.

13. It is all about save money- ten, via Yahoo Answers.

14. Yes..........I like to browse charity shops, looking for bargains- maryann, via Yahoo Answers.

15. No never have- knownout, via Yahoo Answers.

16. Often why not- Duck Joker, via Yahoo Answers.

17. Yes i do as long as it is cheap- Stephen Martin, via Yahoo Answers.

18. Yes- mine97, via Yahoo Answers.

19. Idk i like fruit cups- carnifex, via Yahoo Answers.

20. In USA-Yes
In Mexico-No,it can be stolen or for all I know have blood stains..and no such thing as charity here LOL- men7al, via Yahoo Answers.


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