Got some old furniture, bric-a-brac or unwanted stuff laying around? Learn how one of our supporters turned junk into treasure and made £35,000 for BHWT!
Our fundraising department recently heard from wonder eBayer Megan Huskisson. She’s been raising money for the British Hen Welfare Trust through the sales of unwanted and refurbished goods since way back in 2013, and during this time has collected a staggering £35k+.
We were so curious as to just how she’s been able to do this so we asked her a whole bunch of questions, and here’s what Megan has to say:
HOW DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THE BHWT ORIGINALLY?
Mum had always wanted chickens, so when one of our neighbours at the local allotment got some hens, it encouraged her to take the plunge as well. We discovered that there was a pick up point close by us in Allesley and so our experience with the BHWT began!
DO YOU KEEP CHICKENS? DO YOU HAVE ANY OTHER PETS?
At one point in time, we had almost 40 hens in the back garden! At the moment, we’re down to 20, as though we have the space and spare paddocks, trying to rescue and rehome in the pandemic, whilst keeping ourselves safely shielded, has been impossible.
Along with our flocks of beautiful hens, we also have rabbits, guinea pigs, cats (2 of which were feral and have subsequently become wonderfully domesticated and tame) terrapins, degus and rats.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN AN EBAY SELLER? WERE YOU SELLING BEFORE CONNECTING WITH THE BHWT?
I’ve been on eBay for as long as I can remember. To begin with we were selling themed packs of magazine clippings to scrapbookers.
WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR MERCHANDISE?
Waaaaaay back, at the very beginning of our fundraising, about 8 years ago now, we sold off a lot of our personal belongings as we cleared the house ready to move. Once we ran out of that, we actually filled the house back up with donations, to the point where there was even less space than before! Now we have a proper stock room to work from. We’ve had to reinforce the floor to take the weight. Despite this, we’re always open to more donations!
IS EBAY SELLING FUN?
It’s fun, uplifting, exhilarating! Frankly I get dreadfully addicted to it. I don’t find a lot of things very challenging and can predict the outcome of most situations so what I like about eBay is that it’s the exact opposite–unpredictable and random. You never know what’s going to sell, or when someone will buy it. Even on a bad day, fundraising on eBay always cheers me up. You meet such a lovely array of people too and I’ve made lots of friends from supporters on there.
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO DONATE PART OF YOUR SALES TO US?
Any donated items have 80% of the sale price donated directly to the British Hen Welfare Trust. We spend the 20% remaining on packaging materials (black bags, parcel tape, printer ink, printer paper etc.) and washing powder (as we wash all the soft toys before dispatch). It also covers the Paypal fees that we pay for personally from each sale, which is approximately 30 pence or so.
Any of our personal items get 10% to 20% donated to the BHWT, to replace the 20% taken from the donations, and also to get a wider audience exposed to the charity. This way, multiple buying markets will be exposed to the logo and the cause.
WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO SOMEONE WHO WANTS TO BECOME AN EBAY SELLER? (ANY TIPS ETC…)
First and foremost, get yourself registered on there and make sure you have a Paypal account. After that, you’re good to go. Stay safe, if you’re worried about shielding due to Covid-19, certain couriers such as Hermes, will collect parcels from a safe place, so there’s no need to leave the home.
As for tips, always price out your goods before listing them, some things can fetch a shocking amount and others can be relatively worthless, and make sure you get as many keywords in the title as possible so your items show up in a lot of search results.
DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE CHICKEN BREED?
I have ornithophobia, which basically means I’m really scared of all birds! However, the hens are so adorable that I can’t resist them. We have had other rescued chickens that are not ex caged/ex bats, such as Bluebells and Araucanas, but they tend to be more standoffish and less affectionate than the caged girls. It could just be what they’ve been through and endured before coming to us.
Wow! We are truly grateful to Megan for everything she’s donated to us over the years and we’d like to give her, and her family team, a huge shout out for all their hard work, which has meant the difference between life and death for so many lucky hens.
So, if you, like Megan, know the ‘chicks of the trade’ and think you can raise some ‘buck, buck, bucks’ then selling your unwanted items on eBay is maybe the way to go. Just set up an eBay account, follow the instructions to list an item, then tick the box to donate a portion to charity, entering our name in the search box. When your item sells we’ll automatically receive a share of the proceeds.
If you have any further questions about how to get involved in eBay fundraising please don’t hesitate to contact us.