Paul Russell of Canterbury Museums and Galleries explains:
‘The project is primarily a review of our stored art collection, which includes work by Henry Moore, David Hockney and a wide selection of Old Masters. The aim is to give us a greater understanding of this amazing resource and explore ways to make it more relevant and accessible to our audience whilst benefiting and developing the skills and experience of our volunteers. Working with museum staff and art experts, volunteers will follow our established system to record and photograph each artwork in the museum’s art collection.
Canterbury Museums and Galleries is a National Portfolio Organisation recognised for our health and well-being work. As part of the national Happy Museums initiative we are exploring its benefits in every part of our work and embedding health and well-being across our activities. We currently use our collection for therapeutic purposes to support and deliver health and well-being outcomes for our local community, and in the past our volunteers have reported that working with museum objects has helped their confidence. Wider evidence also shows that volunteering has a positive effect for people who suffer from anxiety. This project aims to build on this success so we are particularly interested in working with volunteers who are affected by anxiety in the hope that it will have a positive impact on their well-being and employability. We would like to gather evidence for this by asking volunteers to participate in an evaluation exercise as the project progresses.’
The Beaney is keen to engage with students from the University of Kent, so please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to join the project.