Recognising Volunteers Week

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Posted 1st June 2016

Volunteering at Watts Gallery - Artists' Village

By Joan Leifer

'I have been a Friend of Watts Gallery – Artists' Village for a number of years and a volunteer steward since January 2016. My first shift was in Watts Studios on the day it opened to the general public, and I was hooked.

I had been looking for a volunteer role for several months. I had spent fifteen years as a charity volunteer running a small village hall and its theatre, but my first love was always art and art history. I had spoken with several volunteer stewards during my visits to Watts Gallery, and they were always welcoming and enthusiastic.

I live a relatively long distance away compared to some volunteers, but what really made me want to be part of the team at Watts was the friendliness of the people I met there and also the flexibility of not being expected to commit to certain shifts. At Watts one fills in the rota to suit, so I tend to do a weekly single or double shift on different weekdays.

I have met some fantastic people, and one of my pleasures is learning from the mainly young, knowledgeable and dynamic staff. They are such a vibrant bunch and make me feel energised.

Sometimes my brain hurts from all the new information, but that's been my choice to research all the time. The training is ongoing, and volunteer feedback is actively sought. All shifts are different, and I am so delighted to be part of the team.'

Watts Gallery Trust is an independent charity, and we rely on the commitment of over 300 volunteers. Thank you to all our volunteers for your hard work and commitment to making the Artists' Village a great place to visit!

Interested in joining our volunteer team? Visit our volunteers page or attend the next Volunteer Open Morning on Friday 29 July at 11am.