Giving Back

Aira Gets Thrifty - Volunteering at Oxfam’s Online Hub

4 years ago

In the run up to Black Friday and the Christmas rush, Aira sent two teams to Oxfam’s Online Hub in Milton Keynes to help list, pick and pack some of their newest arrivals.

The Online Hub is the central point for all clothing and accessories sold on Oxfam’s online shop. They process a huge number of orders everyday, receiving items from Oxfam stores up and down the country, as well as donations of factory seconds and end-of-line stock from the likes of ASOS and Marks & Spencer.

On arrival, Sarah gave us a tour of the warehouse and walked us through the process from stock being delivered, to being photographed and listed, to heading out of the door to new homes.

Aira at Oxfam

We then got down to work listing some products on the website. We soon got the hang of pricing up the items and taking measurements, and our SEO expertise came in handy when writing compelling descriptions! Along the way we came across some absolute gems that we wished we could take home with us - a Joules coat for £15.99 anyone?

Some of the team also tried their hand at picking and packing. The Online Hub stocks a huge number of items, from wedding dresses to winter coats, so finding the exact item you’re looking for can sometimes be a challenge. Thankfully everything is organised by location, so any seasoned IKEA shopper can find their way around.

We ended with a competition to see which team had listed the most items throughout the day. The average number of listings per person was 22 for both teams, making it a draw, but with a total 154 items listed and 180 picked and packed we couldn’t complain!

Aira’s Faye Absolom, who attended the volunteering day, said:

“It was such a fulfilling experience knowing your digital skills are being used to benefit a charity. It was great to be exposed to Oxfam's processes and realise the huge scale of their operation.”

Thanks to Oxfam for having us. We’re so lucky to have amazing charities and businesses on our doorstep in Milton Keynes and we’d definitely recommend donating your time to this great cause.

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