A group of volunteers have been honoured by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust for each clocking up 200+ hours helping tell the story of William Shakespeare at his family homes in Stratford-upon-Avon.
They were each presented with a certificate and badge highlighting their contribution at a special event that was hosted in the garden of Shakespeare’s Birthplace by Trust chief executive Tim Cooke.
The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, the independent and self-sustaining charity that cares for the world’s greatest Shakespeare heritage sites in his home town of Stratford-upon-Avon, is highlighting the contribution of its volunteers during National Volunteer Week, which runs from 1-7 June.
The Trust has 165 active volunteers, ranging in age from 17 to 87, the longest serving has been volunteering for 10 years, and one regularly travels from Scotland and another from Devon.
So far this year volunteers have contributed almost 8,000 hours of their time across the Trust, and throughout the whole of 2018 volunteers gave 25,500 hours of their time.
The 12 members of the Trust’s Board of trustees are also volunteers, giving around 1,600 hours between them every year, and this year there are eight interns from the University of Birmingham and Brigham Young University in Utah, US. The Trust’s gardens team also runs a corporate volunteer scheme in which companies can complete a day-long project at one of the five Shakespeare family homes.
Volunteers work alongside the 280 staff employed by the Trust, which has featured in the Sunday Times 100 Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to Work For for four of the past five years.
Emma Birks, volunteers, communities and access officer, said, “Volunteers are highly valued and integral members of our team, and play a crucial role in supporting our staff and enhancing the experience of our visitors. As an independent, self-sustaining charity we would not be able to operate as we do without the support of our volunteers. They also see many personal benefits such as learning new skills, gaining useful work and life experience, making new friends, and using their existing skills and knowledge to help use share the story of Shakespeare’s work, life and times with the world.”
To find out about volunteering opportunities, see: www.shakespeare.org.uk/support-us/volunteer/.