Bookshop Volunteer


Oxfam shops have a long tradition of selling second-hand books and we receive lots of generous donations. There is a massive range in the value of the books we handle: from paperback novels which sell for a few pounds to valuable collectible items which may sell for thousands of pounds. Our teams of book volunteers ensure all donations are sold for the best price possible, so that we can continue to support Oxfam's work. 

A number of our shops also sell books through our online shop and therefore in addition to working in our high street shops, some shops may have vacancies for volunteers keen to develop this area of work. 

Key responsibilities

Depending on the needs of the shop and your interests, you may be involved in the following: 

  • Using the shop's guidelines to sort and price donated books, ensuring all books are sold at the best possible price
  • Identifying and researching the value of collectible items
  • Creating attractive displays across the shop
  • Providing customer service on the shop floor
  • There may be the opportunity to take responsibility for a specific section of books

We encourage our shop volunteers to develop an understanding of all aspects of the shop's work so that they can support the whole team as necessary.

Skills and competencies

You do not need specific skills and experience but the following will be useful:

  • Commitment to Oxfam's values of empowerment, accountability and inclusiveness.
  • Ability to work within Oxfam's policies and shop guidelines.
  • Enthusiasm for reading.
  • Knowledge of collectible books.
  • Ability to work well as part of a team and under own initiative.

What this role can offer the volunteer

  • You will be joining thousands of volunteers who "won't live with poverty".
  • Opportunity to utilise and develop your portfolio of skills and experience.
  • Deepen your knowledge about books.
  • Gain valuable experience in retail at an international charity.
  • Lunch and local travel expenses can be reimbursed in line with Oxfam's policy.


Find your local shop here. This will give you contact details for the shop so you can phone or visit to find out more.

Application process

Search for volunteering opportunities near you and apply online.

Application deadline:


Interview date:

The shop manager will contact you as soon as possible and will arrange a convenient time for you to visit the shop and have a chat about volunteering.

Start date:

As soon as you have had an initial chat with the shop manager and after receipt of suitable references, you can arrange a start date.