Over 70 of Birmingham’s Arts Volunteers took centre stage at Birmingham Repertory Theatre on 1 June to herald the start of Volunteers Week 2019.
The special thank you event, attended by the Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Cllr Mohammed Azim and Lady Mayoress Bushra Bi, was an opportunity to thank the people who contribute to the smooth running of Birmingham’s thriving arts scene.
Volunteering across Birmingham’s arts and cultural sector is well established with opportunities at one-off events, at venues and at festivals across the city. Between March 18 and April 19 over 1500* people, aged from 16 to 74 gave their time with organisations recording 40,353 volunteer hours*.
At the event people talked about the varied reasons they’ve got involved with volunteering and shared stories of what they’d enjoyed most.
Pam Heera aged 44 who volunteers at venues and festivals across the City said: “I enjoy meeting new people from different cultures and backgrounds.”
Edward Bond, aged 74 years and the oldest current Birmingham Arts Volunteer said: “My best volunteer memory was on a Birmingham Christmas Parade, dressed as one of two ugly sisters walking around the city.”
New to volunteering,Cerys Giles aged 16 years said:“I am hoping to meet new people and volunteering experience will look good on my CV.”
Yvonne Gregory, Birmingham Arts Volunteers Manager said: “It was fantastic to celebrate with and thank so many of our existing volunteers at The Rep on Saturday, we were delighted to be joined by the Lord Mayor of Birmingham.
“On the day we also held a busy volunteer fair where those interested in getting involved could sign up, I look forward to the next year of volunteering with our wonderful existing volunteers and our new colleagues. They really are the heroes of the Birmingham arts scene.”
Throughout the week look out for stories celebrating existing Birmingham Arts Volunteers on Twitter, and follow #BePartOfTheArts #VolunteersWeek
*Figures based on 2018/19 date provided by CBSO, Culture Central (Commonwealth Games Handover and Homecoming; BRUM 130) Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Birmingham Museums Trust, Birmingham Centre for Arts Therapies, Midlands Arts Centre (MAC), DanceXchange and BIDF; Birmingham Royal Ballet; Town Hall Symphony Hall; BE Festival; Women & Theatre.
Photograph by Fraser McGee.