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UCL Culture Blog


News and musings from the UCL Culture team


Call for volunteers: Touching Heritage

By Nicholas Vogelpoel, on 6 August 2012

If you are someone who is passionate about heritage, interested in health and wellbeing, and keen to volunteer in an innovative heritage-in-health project – we want to hear from you!
Patient in object-handling session © UCL Museums and Public Engagement

UCL Museums and Public Engagement is looking for a new group of volunteers to take part in the Touching Heritage project, supported by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund. The new programme aims to widen participation in cultural activities by taking museum objects out to hospitals and other healthcare communities that would otherwise be excluded from museum activities (e.g., residential care homes). One-to-one and group sessions led by facilitators will focus on the cultural, social and natural diversity of the objects in relation to participants’ own health and wellbeing. The experience will be enhanced by touching and handling objects traditionally associated with health and wellbeing, and by discussing how the objects feel, what they are made of or whether they resonate in other ways with participants.

We are currently seeking volunteers to train as facilitators of museum object handling sessions, and then to co-ordinate object handling sessions in hospitals, care homes and other healthcare environments as part of the project.

Commitment to the project will vary depending on your availability. Ideally, you will be available and willing to participate in a short training programme in September 2012, and be able to conduct sessions from September 2012 – February 2013, once or twice a week.

The training programme will teach you everything you need to know about facilitating object-handling sessions and will give you some valuable skills in running your own arts/heritage-in-health activities. The training is hands-on and practical and will be full of fun, educational and team-based activities. By the end of the program, you will be ready to conduct object-handling sessions in a range of healthcare settings and be part of an inclusive and supportive team, ready to take museums to people who don’t have access to them.

You will be mentored and supported by the Outreach Co-ordinator in a team of volunteers, and you will gain skills in object handling processes and contribute to the Heritage in Healthcare research programme; learning about health and wellbeing in participatory cultural and heritage activities.

If you are interested in volunteering for this project, or want to know any further information, we would love to hear from you.

Nic Vogelpoel
Outreach Co-ordinator – Touching Heritage: Objects to Healthcare
44(0)20 7679 2211

One Response to “Call for volunteers: Touching Heritage”

  • 1
    Julia Newton wrote on 9 August 2012:

    Dear Nic,

    I would be v interested in training as a volunteer for museum facilitators in arts heritage. I have an MA from UCL in Classical Art and Archaeology and am passionate about the idea of taking museum objects into the community

    I hope to hear from you

    Warm regards

    Julia Newton

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