Volunteering

cropped-cropped-treehouse-header.pngThe Tree House was not intended originally to be volunteer-run, but the realities of survival on the high street mean we have had to be.  It does add to the sense of it being a community venture, about people and reading and promoting the arts more than about commerce, but it is also a challenge.  I run the place full time, but have not been able to earn anything since we moved from our old premises.  So I need to find other ways to earn money, if I am to carry on running the Tree House.  This in practical terms means I need a bit more time away from the bookshop.

So I am looking for one or two volunteers who would like a regular commitment and have half a day or a day a week or a fortnight to spare.  We currently have one person who works every other Wednesday morning, and it’s a godsend – if we could find someone to do the afternoon on the days she works, that would be even better!  It would also be good to have Friday afternoons covered, as I have some opportunities to work elsewhere then.  But any days or half days would be welcomed.

You need to be confident of being at the bookshop on your own – though if we have enough suitable applicants, we can pair people up.  You need to be able to engage with customers and keep up to date with what’s happening at the bookshop.  There is always work to be done in terms of tidying and stocking the shelves, but if you have computer work to do or even want to spend some time reading (!) you would be able to do that too.  Some are keener to be physically busy than others – and the main thing is to keep the bookshop open as much as possible and be there for customers.

So if you are interested, do get in touch and we can talk more about it all – what’s involved, what level of availability you have and so on.  Email victoria@treehousebookshop.co.uk or call into the bookshop to arrange a meeting – I can’t always stop and chat then and there, but we can fix a time to discuss things if I am busy.

I am also always looking for evening help – at music events, film nights, etc – so if you are interested in being involved in those, I would love to hear from you too.

Lots going on!

Gill Sans poster (2)This evening we start our weekly volunteers’ drop-in sessions, from 5-7pm – if you fancy lending a hand with whatever needs doing, just call in for as long (or as short) as you like.  We will be mostly tidying shelves, sorting books, washing up, preparing for our children’s bookstall tomorrow – it’s all much more fun with a group of people.

Then we have T’ai Chi and Nifty Needles, both of which start at 7pm – T’ai Chi on one side of the room, people knitting, crocheting, embroidering and plumping cushions on the other side – surreal but it works!

Tomorrow morning we have a bookstall for children, as it’s half term – if it’s dry, we’ll be outside Town & Country Furniture, if it’s wet or very cold we will be inside the Tree House.  There will be a few things for grown-ups too!

Saturday evening sees the first of our Saturday evening films as part of our film club – Finnish drama The Man Without a Past (7.30pm, doors 7pm).  Sunday afternoon’s treat is the fabulous Brief Encounter (3pm, doors 2.30pm).  £5 including annual subscription to the film club, £3 for members, £2 for members who are Friends of the Tree House.  Refreshments included.

Saturday March 8th is the date for a talk and booksigning by Greta Berlin, a long term activist on behalf of the Palestinians in Gaza.

We are planning a Shakespeare festival in April; we wanted to mark the great man’s birthday anyway, but as it’s his 450th we decided to run a week long series of events from 19th-27th April, including talks, films, performances, Elizabethan dancing, children’s workshops.  There is a Facebook page for the festival, and I will of course update you here as to what’s happening.

Don’t forget our regular Wednesday afternoon therapy sessions – Reflexology and Shiatsu.  You can book full sessions or 20-minute tasters – you can also call in on the off-chance if you are out and about on Wednesday afternoons.  Reflexology 12-3, Shiatsu 12-5.

We have also been running a course on mindfulness on Monday evenings, which has been wonderful.  Vicky Lindsay, who runs it, is planning another course when this one ends – a taster session then another run of the 8-week course, so look out for updates on that – I would heartily recommend it to anyone.

I can safely say ‘we’ for most things now, as I have a fabulous band of regular, committed volunteers without whom I would not personally be surviving!  I even came back from a day away teaching yesterday to find dinner in the fridge…