The Charter for Heritage Volunteering

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National Heritage Volunteering Advisory Body

Most of the Heritage Sites and Museums in this country wouldn't be here today without the effort of Volunteers, for which we owe them such enormous gratitude. Saying 'thank-you' doesn't quite seem enough.

The Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust has been involved with establishing the National Heritage Volunteering Advisory Body (NHVAB), responsible for drawing up the Charter for Heritage Volunteering, which will be launched in September 2014 in York: This eight-point Charter provides standards for managing Volunteers in the Heritage and Museum sector, drawing on global principles agreed to give Volunteers fair, consistent and sustainable management and support. We feel this Charter goes some way to saying ‘Thank-you’ to all the Heritage Volunteers for keeping us all open and for adding such a rich layer of expertise, knowledge and warmth.

Four Volunteer Managers (from Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, the National Railway Museum, Imperial War Museum North and Birmingham Museums Trust) who have long recognised the contribution of Heritage Volunteers in their own organisations started to meet in the latter part of 2013, to work out how best to acknowledge nationally, the enormous gift given by this band of thousands: The result is The Heritage Volunteering Charter, and between all members of the body, the aim is to roll this Charter out to every single organisation in Britain working with Volunteers in the Heritage sector. Represented at the Charter’s launch will be members of many of the sector’s key organisations and member-groups, along with specialists from outside the sector. Advice has been sought in writing the Charter from many bodies and individuals nationally – for which we are eternally grateful.

The Volunteer Centre at Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust is extremely proud to be a part of the Advisory Body and has integrated the Charter for Heritage Volunteering into its Volunteer Management, the Volunteers’ Inductions, and their Handbook. The values interpreted through the charter underpin the Trust’s Volunteer Policy, and we continue to be advocates for the Charter’s eight Standards. If you’d like more information on the Advisory Body or the Charter for Heritage Volunteering, please email or telephone 01952 601044

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