Supported volunteering and the Our Museum initiative


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Loveday Allen of St Fagans national history museum at WCVA's 2013 Volunteering Conference.

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Supported volunteering and the Our Museum initiative

  1. 1. Supported Volunteering and the Our Museum Initiative Creating a Community of Volunteers at St Fagans: National History Museum Loveday Williams: “Our Museum” Coordinator, St Fagans: National History Museum
  2. 2. What is Supported Volunteering? Supported Volunteering refers to schemes where volunteers receive additional support in order to carry out their volunteer roles A volunteer may require extra support for a variety of reasons. For instance, they could:  be lacking in confidence after a long period of unemployment  have physical disabilities or health conditions  have learning disabilities  have mental health issues  be homeless  be striving to break patterns of negative behaviour, such as gambling or drug misuse  be a non-English speaker (Volunteer England Website October 2012)
  3. 3. What is Inclusive Volunteering? “Inclusive volunteering is about making volunteering accessible for everyone. The Government’s Compact Code of Good Practice recognises the need ‘to effectively tackle discrimination to ensure that volunteering is open to all.’” (Can Do – A Guide to Involving Young Disabled People as Volunteers; Leonard Cheshire, Russell Commission, Scope: unteering_toolkit.pdf)
  4. 4. By ensuring that your project is inclusive, you are automatically increasing your pool of potential volunteers A more diverse group of volunteers will:  Offer a wide range of skills, experiences and perspectives  Increase the sustainability of your project  Reflect your community and provide more opportunity to build partnerships within it  Broaden your client groups’ understanding of diversity issues  Bring new ideas and a ‘breath of fresh air’ to your organisation Scope Inclusive Volunteering Companion A toolkit for engaging and supporting disabled volunteers in your organisation
  5. 5. Why Offer Supported Volunteering?  Supported volunteering allows us to widen access and offer opportunities to different audiences  Supported volunteering enables those previously unable to volunteer the chance to engage with organisations and gain new and exciting experiences and skills  Supported volunteering will bring added value to any organisation offering such opportunities
  6. 6. Case Study Exercise  Read the Case Study provided  Then answer the following questions: • How do you think volunteering benefited Robert? • Can you identify the things he’s gained from volunteering?
  7. 7. Approaches to Supported Volunteering  Plan in advance  Establish a programme with realistic targets and goals in mind  Manage expectations  Train staff appropriately  Train volunteers appropriately  Establish a clear time frame and recruit on a rolling cycle  Introduce Volunteer Mentor opportunities  Hold regular supervision sessions  Establish individual goals with volunteers  Monitor and review volunteers progress against goals  Have a beginning and an end  Help volunteers to progress to new things, possibly independent volunteering with you or another organisation
  8. 8. St Fagans – Our Museum Building a Community of Volunteers Case Study
  9. 9. The benefits of being inclusive and ways to develop supported volunteering in your organisation Group Work Methods to including Best Practice
  10. 10. Results  Allows people to take part  Accessible and inclusive  Develops skills and experience  Raises confidence of those that take part  Adds value to your organisation  Attracts funders  Great for raising awareness among staff and the public at large  Good for generating case studies and good news stories
  11. 11. Action Planning What can we do? How can we do it? When can we do it?
  12. 12. Summary  It does not need to involve new staff or much additional resource  You do not need to introduce an all encompassing programme  It is simply good to try and include some of these methods into your overall volunteer programme  Trying to develop roles and support structures which allow for wider access and more people to take part will help your organisation develop  It is likely that such an approach would please funders and attract more external support, be it corporate volunteers or financial donations/benefits  Enabling more people to take part brings more experience and texture to organisations and helps people to develop
  13. 13. Contact Details Loveday Williams ‘Our Museum’ Co-ordinator St Fagans, National Museum of Wales Email: Tel: 029 2057 3456
  14. 14. Diolch i chi! Thank you! Cwestiynau? Any Question?