Red Cross entices young volunteers with retail qualification

The Red Cross has introduced a retail qualification to encourage more young people to volunteer in its shops.

A Red Cross Volunteer mans a charity shop
A Red Cross Volunteer mans a charity shop
The charity hopes the chance to work towards its ‘certificate in retail skills’, which fulfils Russell Commission criteria for recognition and clear outcomes, will help it recruit more people under 26, making its shops more attractive to the large youth market. The charity thinks it is the first to launch such a qualification.

Miranda Bradley, retail development adviser at the Red Cross, said the certificate was devised by young volunteers who wanted a qualification less onerous than alternatives such as NVQs.

“The new certificate will enable young volunteers to reach their potential, empowering then to make the most of their time with us and build up something tangible and useful for the future," she said.

The certificate will be available at standard and advanced levels. The standard certificate, expected to take about 40 volunteer hours to complete, will be an introduction to basic retail skills. The advanced certificate, expected to take about 100 hours, will involve more creative tasks such as managing a shop department or organising a volunteer recruitment campaign.

The courses will be supervised by local shop managers and quality checked at the Red Cross’s head office.

The charity is also offering four awards of £250 for young volunteers who devise innovative projects that increase sales or raise awareness of Red Cross shops.

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