Projects, events and news from the University of Cambridge Museums
Our Summer at the Museums programme offers a jam-packed line-up of activities and events for families throughout the school holidays. With a range of hands-on creative happenings taking place almost every day of the week, it’s an extremely busy time for our museums. To support all the activity that is taking place during this time, we rely on a happy band of volunteers to make sure everything runs smoothly. From helping out with art and craft activities, providing information to visitors, taking photographs, and assisting with visitor evaluations, there are a number of ways in which they are involved.
Another area in which volunteers make a huge contribution during this period, is with our outreach events for families, part of the ChYpPs (Children’s and Young Peoples Participation Service) Summer Daze programme. Based in recreation grounds across the city, families can experience getting hands on with objects from the museums, creating their own artworks and make discoveries with museum experts. Madison Venables has spent the summer as an outreach volunteer and describes her experience.
University of Cambridge Museums ‘Summer at the Museums’ was recommended to me by a staff member from Kettle’s Yard, and the programme went beyond my expectations. I signed up for five events that ran through the summer holiday and had me running all over the city of Cambridge! I loved working alongside museum professionals once again, but I also really enjoyed meeting members of the community. This programme offered not only the chance to work outreach events, but to experience Cambridge in a way I had not been able to as of yet. All the events took place at a different recreation ground or park around the city, but in each location there were excited residents and families eager to take part in the activities — rain or shine!
I was astounded by the sheer number of museums in Cambridge, let alone the commitment of their staff. What I always draw most from museum outreach programmes is how they effectively engage people from all walks of life. We learned about snail shells and micro-habitats, animal fur and conservation, swords and ancient runes. The list goes on… and everyone had fun while discovering new things about the institutions in their area, such as exhibitions, renovation projects, and youth clubs.
This is a programme I will look forward to attending next summer holiday, as should you!”