Volunteers make a vital difference to our work and we are extremely grateful to all our volunteers whose time and effort bring so much to the Herbert and its visitors.
What Do Volunteers Do?
The majority of the Herbert's volunteers work directly with the public in roles as diverse as Welcome Hosts, Workshop Assistants, Retail Support and Exhibition Guides. Other volunteers support the work of our curatorial, archives, learning, and marketing and collection teams. Volunteer support is crucial, enabling us to enrich our offer to the public, and supporting our aim of bringing history and the arts to life in Coventry.
You don't need to have specialist knowledge to volunteer, just an enthusiasm for our work and a willingness to learn new skills and/or working practices.
Volunteers at the Herbert come from a variety of backgrounds and industries. Our youngest volunteers are 16 and our oldest volunteers are enjoying their retirement years.
Some of our volunteers are only able to offer us an hour per week; others are able to support us for longer. The Herbert is open to the public from 10 – 4 Mondays to Saturdays and 12 - 4 Sundays; and Volunteers are asked to commit to at least 1 session per week (morning or afternoon) for a minimum period of 4 weeks but are welcome to volunteer for longer periods. Volunteers at the Lunt Roman Fort are offered opportunities within the seasonal opening times.
Herbert Volunteers are given training, offered opportunities for behind the scenes tours and are invited to exhibition previews and given discounts in the Herbert Shop and Herbert Café.
People volunteer with us for a variety of reasons. Here are some reasons why our current volunteers are with us:
- For enjoyment
- To get involved and share their enthusiasm for our museum and art gallery
- To make new friends
- To gain skills
- To get work experience
- To maintain skills continuity
- To add to their CV
- To gain an award or qualification
- To share their talents
- To help others
- To make an impact in their community
Volunteer role descriptions will identify what are skills are needed and also whether the role is open-ended or for a specific time period. For example volunteers who help us with a public facing role need to enjoy meeting people, have a sense of fun and be interested in the museum, its collections and exhibitions.
How to Volunteer
Every month we hold a general information session for prospective volunteers at the museum.
The information session is very informal. Its purpose is to give prospective volunteers some background on the Herbert, with a brief tour and an overview of the current roles that are available. There is no commitment on either side and you will be given an opportunity to talk individually with the volunteer coordinator if you wish.
If you are interested in a specific role but cannot find it in our current opportunities please download the expression of interest form and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org with a brief explanation of your interests and experience.
Early Years Learning Assistant
We are looking for enthusiastic individuals who are keen to gain experience with our youngest visitors (those aged 0-4 years old). As an early years volunteer you will be friendly, energetic, easy to talk to and patient. The Herbert offers a wide range of early years activities that include sensory play sessions and our VERY messy Mini Makers activities. These sessions get incredibly busy and involve a lot of tidying up, but most importantly fun!
Main Duties and Activities
• Assisting families as they arrive for the activities. This includes taking payment, introducing them to the activities and directing them to where to put pushchairs.
• Talking to parents/carers to ensure they are happy and relaxed.
• Encouraging play - this sometimes involves helping a shy child to feel comfortable within the museum setting, or offering words of advice to parents about how to interact with our spaces.
• Being an advocate for sensory, imaginative and open-ended play.
• Promoting our early years offer and wider family programme.
• Helping to tidy up at the end of the activities.
Find out more.