Tuesday 24 May 2016

Anna's work placement diary

Anna on student placement

Week 1: 25/04/16

Hi, my name is Anna and over the next four weeks I will be doing a work placement at Emmaus Mossley. I am a second year Human Geography student who is undertaking this for my vocational unit at Manchester Metropolitan University to learn more about the workplace of my choice.

When I first arrived in Mossley I chatted to a woman and explained I was going to be doing my work placement with Emmaus Mossley. The woman said how Emmaus was her favourite place to shop and that she preferred to travel to Mossley to donate and purchase items than anywhere else. By lunch time that day I realised why she admired the place so much. The shop itself has everything and anything a person could need. The variety of items on sale is very impressive. Many volunteers called Emmaus Mossley an 'Aladdins cave' and you can tell why! The companions, volunteers and staff are all very welcoming, friendly and hardworking which made settling in very easy. The team are committed to helping one another and together they form a community of people who help each other and other people. I find it hard to distinguish who are staff, volunteers and companions because everyone is treated equally and works just as hard as each other.

My first week at Emmaus has been busy but very enjoyable. This week has been an introduction to Emmaus and I have learnt a lot about what Emmaus does. On my first day I was thrown in at the deep end to support an away day for New Economy. I have particularly enjoyed working with the upcycling group and learning how they help transform useless objects into items that can be sold. Next week I will be starting a project that will benefit Emmaus Mossley. I hope to base my project around upcycling by creating items out of stuff that is not selling around the shop. It has been great to learn more about Emmaus and I am looking forward to the next three weeks.


Week 2: 06/05/16

My second week at Emmaus has involved starting my project. My project has been informed by what I have learned about Emmaus and will be centred on how I can make a positive contribution. I have started planning and undertaking research which will be used to improve upcycling at Emmaus, researching upcycling ideas, starting some simple upcycling projects and working on the Emporium to improve the visual merchandising of the shop. There is a big potential at Emmaus to transform objects to help store and show off items that are on sale. So far, I have really enjoyed working with the upcycling group who have lots of great ideas and have encouraged me to help and get creative with upcycling. As well as this I have been assisting Heather in the office, working on the Emmaus Mossley eBay account and have been getting creative and improving the display in the Emporium. I am also enjoying sitting and chatting to companions, volunteers and staff on our lunch break to get to know some great people better. Next week, and the following two weeks, I hope to upcycle many objects that I can transform or improve the look of objects to sell in the shop and I’ll be very happy to help in other areas as well.


Week 3: 11/05/16

This week I have been able to get in the workshop and produce some upcycled items. I have started by improving the appearance of furniture by sanding and painting them so that they are in excellent condition to sell in the shop. The furniture will be used in many ways. I have sanded and repainted a table and chairs for the garden to sell in store, 2 shelves (not for sale) that I have sanded and repainted to help display objects neatly and two chairs sanded and decorated to sell. I’d like to thank Keith, Andy and Phil in the workshop who have taught and helped me if I had any issues and were always up for a sing along (or whistle along) to Key103!

I have also created a lamp shade out of old fabric and ribbon after Hazel gave me the idea. I managed to find a YouTube video which showed me how to make them and I hope to make more lamp shades next week as this was particularly fun to do! I am very surprised at how fast my time at Emmaus is going which is a shame as I have really settled in and am enjoying what I am working on!


Week 4: 20/05/16

This week I have finalised my survey for my research on upcycling to help inform the upcycling volunteers in terms of what people would like to buy from Emmaus Mossley. The survey was up and running by mid-week after being posted to the Facebook page. I hope the responses are useful for the upcycling group. I have also made another two lampshades and done some wood work to improve the look of some old furniture. I hope all the items I have produced during my placement will sell and that people will enjoy using them as much as I have enjoyed making them. Time definitely flies when you are having fun as I cannot believe where the time has gone! I can’t thank everyone enough at Emmaus Mossley for the experience.

This is not goodbye, I hope to volunteer here again in the future since I have enjoyed my time here so much AND I will definitely be back to purchase some of the amazing items for sale, upcycled or not!

Bye for now,

Anna J

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