Museum volunteer project benefiting whole of Lowestoft community
- Credit: Nick Butcher
A new initiative aiming to improve the sustainability of Lowestoft museums is seeking more volunteers following a wave of positive feedback from the community.
The Lowestoft Rising with Museums project has provided 14 people with volunteering opportunities already.
Arts Council England is funding the initiative supporting the town's three most popular museums; Lowestoft Museum, Lowestoft Maritime Museum and East Anglia Transport Museum.
Following a series of open events earlier this year, the new volunteers are now in place but more people are needed to help the museums thrive.
Taryn Dennis, project officer for Lowestoft Rising, said: 'Each museum has a unique identity and houses bespoke collections relating to the preservation of Lowestoft heritage however each one is reliant on the commitment of volunteers.'
A variety of volunteering roles are available, including working with the collections, helping at events, café assistants and learning volunteers to work with local schools.
The museums involved in the project are already reaping the rewards.
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Rodney Duerden, of Lowestoft Museum, said: 'The museum has benefitted greatly from being part of the Lowestoft Rising with Museums project and we have been able to take advantage of all the new materials being provided.
'This extra help has enabled us to open regularly for extra hours and relieve some of the burden on other volunteers.
'The project got us out of a bit of rut and into a more positive frame of mind.'
Lowestoft Rising is working closely with local organisations and attending events promoting the volunteering opportunities to ensure the museums attract people with a variety of skills.
Additionally, the museums are offering work experience placements in collaboration with Inspire Suffolk as well as welcoming volunteers from the Lowestoft Jobcentre.
This work experience has proved vital not only for the museums but dually for those participating.
Lisa Trevor, employer advisor at Lowestoft Jobcentre, said: 'Work experience is an important part of becoming workplace ready.
'It builds self-esteem and confidence and makes our customer feel valued in the community.'
For more details about becoming part of a volunteer-run museum email email@example.com, visit the museums in person or visit www.lowestoftrising.co.uk/lowestoft-rising-with-museums.