27 May 2021

At Venture Arts we’ve always been extremely proud of the energy, commitment and warmth that our volunteers bring.

  National Volunteers’ Week is the perfect opportunity for us to recognise this huge commitment and celebrate the difference that they make.    Across the country, volunteers have been making an exceptional contribution to supporting local communities throughout the difficulties of the past year and at Venture Arts that's no exception.   We currently have a team of 30 volunteers, and during a normal year we work with an average of 100! Some come to gain career development experience; others to have fun, increase wellbeing and give something back to their community. Some are with us for the 10 week minimum commitment and others are still with us 12 years on!   Ordinarily, most of our volunteers assist the workshop tutors and offer hands on support to our artists. During the period the studio was closed volunteers continued to help in a huge variety of ways. Some continued to work with our artists through Zoom sessions, such as the fabulous textile artist, Eloise Pierce. She worked with 12 year old Venture Arts artist Laura, to explore her passion for fashion. Laura designed her own printed fabric and dress design, which was then created by Eloise in to a dress in Laura's size, which looks amazing - check it out here.   We've had people volunteer their graphic design skills for our marketing team, such as student Anne Hermon who worked with artist Michael Nash to create the branding for our Warm-hearts Winter Challenge fundraising campaign.   We've also had volunteers like the wonderful Fiona Gilliand (pictured below), who volunteered her amazing craft skills to create Christmas decorations for our artists' Christmas hampers. Fiona has also made face masks, which she sold raising over £180! Fiona told us:  
"I was extremely nervous on joining Venture Arts as I have issues with anxiety and depression, I was soon made to feel very at easy and totally embraced this opportunity. I am passionate about arts and crafts and it's been a huge part of my recovery, so to be involved with such an amazing place is a great pleasure. It has really built my confidence and I also get the opportunity to learn new skills / textile ideas, which is a bonus!"
The left hand side shows some hand made face masks and on the right is a head and shoulder shot of Sheila. We'd like to thank all those who volunteered their time to fundraise for us over the past year - raising vital funds to enable us to adapt our services so quickly during the pandemic. Lastly, we must not forget the contribution of our Board members, all of whom volunteer their time and skills to support our Director to lead the organisation forward:
"Our Board of Trustees are also voluntary and bring a wealth of experience from across the arts, health, legal and business sectors to help guide the organisation - giving invaluable advice about funding, organisational stability and much, much more. Thank you to them all!” Amanda Sutton, Director of Venture Arts
    We are thrilled to currently be making plans to get volunteers back in to the studio! If you would like to join our volunteer team, whether by supporting our artists directly, or by supporting marketing and fundraising, then please get in touch with Laura at laura@venturearts.org or by calling 0161 232 1223.   
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