Innovative volunteering programme Volunteer Makers has been given Arts Council England backing to deliver its programme to museums across the UK.
The company behind Volunteer Makers, Bristol-based Tickbox, have been awarded £100,000 from the Museum Resilience Fund to deliver training, support and a national conference to support more than 300 museums in adopting a new model of management and relationship building with their volunteers.
The Volunteer Makers model helps organisations engage, manage and grow their volunteer community, opening up volunteering to a wider demographic and connecting with the “long tail” of volunteers. Changes to traditional funding models mean volunteers are becoming increasing important to organisations and shifting demographics have meant that the traditional model for volunteering management and engagement is proving to be challenging for organisations.
Volunteering is seeing a boom with over 23 million of us volunteering at least once a year (13 million volunteering regularly), creating an annual economic value of 43 billion pounds (ONS figures).
Organisations are understanding that there is a real value to creating a community of volunteers, but it requires effective engagement and strategies.
The Volunteer Makers model is supported by the Volunteer Makers digital platform, which helps co-ordinate, target and manage wider volunteer engagement.
The Volunteer Makers programme is already working with museum networks across the UK representing more than 600 museums and the Arts Council grant will allow us to engage museums in all regions to help them develop a model of 21st century volunteering that promotes diversity in volunteering and helps sustain this vital sector.
Phil Gibby, Area Director, South West, Arts Council England, said: ‘This is an innovative project that will deliver tangible benefits to the museums sector and we are delighted to be supporting it.’
Claire Sully, MD of Tickbox, said: “We have worked with museums for 5 years delivering digital training programmes. This has given us an in-depth understanding of the challenges museums face in the 21st century. We have seen the impact of Volunteer Makers in our pilot programme and we are excited about the prospect of taking it to a national platform. What we learn from working with museums we know will benefit other sectors.”