Pembroke Dock Heritage Centre is a volunteer-led operation, with over 100 registered volunteers, and over 60 individuals who are regularly active.
There are a range of roles that volunteers undertake, including Front-of-House duties, Coffee Shop, collections cataloguing and care and more general support roles.
Our volunteers come from all walks of life, and all have different reasons for choosing to volunteer, some are seeking to gain skills and experience to help gain regular employment whilst others do so in order to give something back to the community. All volunteers have an interest in history, and a desire to be active in the community.
How does it work?
Because we rely on volunteers to be able to operate, we do ask that volunteers make a regular commitment. This doesn’t work for everybody, due to individual circumstances, but most volunteers do a three-hour shift each week. Some volunteers choose to do more than one shift, and some might work alternate weeks or other patterns. We will always discuss what is best for each individual.
We know that volunteers are giving their time freely, so we understand that other commitments might take priority. As long as we know when volunteers won’t be available we can plan our rotas and ensure that there is enough cover to continue to operate. We also know that circumstances change, so whenever a volunteer needs to take a break or change their shift patterns, we will always try to accomodate.
We will provide a full induction to new volunteers and train them in their preferred role. Most volunteers will start by working closely with other experienced members of the team, and volunteers will rarely be expected to work alone. Nobody will be expected to perform any duty they are not happy or confident to do.
We will also make sure that volunteers have plenty of time to ‘learn the ropes’, and nobody is expected to know everything about Pembroke Dock’s history!
What sort of work do volunteers do?
There are three main roles that volunteers do in the Heritage Centre, and these are summarised briefly below.
Front-of-House and Gift Shop
Front-of-House volunteers work on the main Reception and Gift Shop desk. Their main role is in greeting visitors, taking money for admissions or Gift Shop purchases, and explaining a little bit about the displays and exhibits.
Our Coffee Shop is an important part of the Heritage Centre. We only serve pre-packaged food, so no catering experience is necessary. Our Coffee Shop volunteers give a warm welcome, take money for purchases and use the barista coffee machine (full training is given).
The Heritage Centre has a large collection of artefacts, ranging from art, photographs, uniforms, medal, aircraft parts, and much more. Much of this collection is in the process of being properly catalogued, using museum standards. Our volunteers are an important part of this process. If you have an interest in working with real historic artefacts, are able to work meticulously and have an eye for detail, this is perfect for you.
What do volunteers get in return?
Our volunteers all participate for a range of reasons. We try to make sure that all our volunteers are able to get what they want from the experience.
Volunteers are entitled to a substantial discount in the Coffee Shop, whether at work or visiting in their own time. All our volunteers are entitled to visit with family or friends without needing to pay for admission.
There are also frequent social activities organised by volunteers, including barbecues and get-togethers at the Heritage Centre and regular pub quiz nights in Pembroke Dock.
If you are interested in finding out more, or if you would like to have a go at volunteering with us, with no commitment to continue, please contact us on 01646 684220 or email email@example.com.