Hinton St. George is a village of dog-lovers and everyone knows full well the meaning of the above phrase.
If we equate a dog to Our SHOP and Christmas to the initial flurry of enthusiasm after its opening, please remember that the shop is for life! Although we have some wonderful volunteers who have turned up week in and week out for their shifts ever since we took the shop over, their number is steadily declining. If this continues, we will in the end be “heading for the Dog’s Home”.
Why are volunteers so important? Calculating the value of volunteers working behind the counter, it works out amazingly at over £20,000 per annum in terms of wages save – and before rental income, the shop last year only just broke even. Quite simply, the economics of village shops are fragile and although we have done well in our first few years, the situation is getting more difficult. With the National Living Wage rising much faster than inflation and the impact of Workplace Pensions, our salary bill is rising quickly; how much it will rise will depend on the strength of our volunteer force.
We know all the reasons why many people say that they can’t volunteer in the shop but equally we know that all our current volunteers could cite the same reasons – but they don’t because they love and value the shop and are determined to see it thrive.
PLEASE – come and give it a try. Jillian would love to see you!
Your Management Committee