National Trust And Possability People Help Disabled Volunteers

Volunteer Room Steward talking to a disabled visitor in the garden at Chartwell. MODEL RELEASED.

Staff and volunteers from Britain’s favourite heritage charity The National Trust, and Sussex charity, Possability People, have recently teamed up to make it easier for disabled people to volunteer at National Trust sites.

A recent event saw 16 people from Sheffield Park & Garden, Nymans and Standen House & Garden come together to learn how to make their volunteering opportunities more accessible, while improving the experiences of their disabled visitors at the same time.

Cindy Gooday from The National Trust said: “This course has given us so many practical things to interest and include disabled people with a very wide range of impairments in what The National Trust does. The trainers were approachable and made what can be a difficult subject to talk about engaging and easy to understand.

“Learning about the social model of disability as a way of making our environment and visitor experience truly disability-friendly was very constructive, and will be a positive and useful goal for the organisation to work towards”.

Geraldine Des Moulins, Chief Executive of Possability People, said: “We are delighted to have worked with The National Trust so that they are better able to support disabled people to enjoy their gardens as volunteers and as visitors. Their enthusiasm and commitment to accessibility means that people who might be concerned about visiting heritage site can now enjoy them as we all do”.

The social model of disability says that people are disabled because of the environment around them, rather than being limited by their impairment or condition. 

Possability People’s training session includes:

  • what is meant by accessible volunteering
  • what reasonable adjustments are and what this might looks like for your organisation
  • practical resources to help you recruit and retain disabled people
  • improved confidence in disability awareness and supporting people with a range of impairments.

If you would like to talk about their training programme, please contact Katharine Russell on 07764 615 020 or go to https://possabilitypeople.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Training_brochure_businesses_email_version.pdf to download their training brochure.

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