Helping at op shops turns into way of life

Never too old . . . Volunteer Lorraine Brown (front) and Shop on Carroll team leader Erin Dellow look through some garments in the store on Friday. PHOTO: JESSICA WILSON

Lorraine Brown has spent nearly half her life volunteering.

The 90-year-old has been helping out at Presbyterian Support Otago op shops for the past 40 years.

“I enjoy the company and meeting people,” she said.

“That’s the main thing.”

She got involved through her church, when women were asked if they wanted to volunteer a few times a year.

“I’m sure that’s about 40 years ago, or probably longer.”

She has spent most of her time at Op Shop on St Andrew, serving customers and hanging garments once a week.

A lot had changed during her time there, mostly to do with technology and the way customers paid.

She had seen new tills installed and the introduction of eftpos.

She thought she was too old to learn how to use the new till as it was “too complicated”.

“It was easy to start with. It’s getting harder and harder,” she laughed.

She has also worked with plenty of shop managers who each had their own new ideas about ways to improve the stores.

She particularly liked some of the window displays.

“Some of them are very clever at dressing the windows.

“I’m sure that brings people in.”

The Star visited Mrs Brown at the Carroll St shop on Friday, her first day there.

Shop on Carroll manager Fiona Dodds said Mrs Brown was always eager to help.

She was reliable, hard-working and had a knack for looking after people, she said.

“She’s just amazing.”