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The volunteering experience at the Horniman

One of our newest volunteers is Bobby Ogogo. Bobby has a visual impairment and over the past few months he’s been helping us test out how blind and partially sighted people can deliver object handling in the galleries. He’s normally in on Wednesday afternoons, so stop by and say hello!

Bobby spoke with Beth, Youth Volunteering Co-ordinator, about his experiences  volunteering at the Horniman:

“The Horniman Museum is very nice and friendly. You can help each other with the objects. It is hard when it’s dark because they can’t switch the light on. Some people can’t see anything so when it’s dark it gets all blurry.

  “In my first week I went to the Access Advisory Group – I was speaking to staff about good lighting and not good lighting. In the second week I learnt object handling. I played with some toys and bells and learned listening, smelling and playing, and to be careful. After that, I have been in the gallery. I liked all of it but object handling is my favourite – I can be gentle with all the objects.

“My dream museum is a nice, light, colourful place. I’d have objects like toys, instruments – anything I can play with. Some museums have nothing to touch. I’d have sound and stories – but not on headphones. Headphones don’t help sometimes because you can’t talk to people at the same time.

 “I learned listening skills and talking to people; meeting and greeting skills. It was absolutely busy – I’ve never seen it busier. I’ve enjoyed it but I wish it was quieter!

“I think volunteering at the Horniman is good. I feel confident about it. I’m getting used to stroking [the ferret] with two fingers. I was asking so many questions – What is it made of? How does it feel? Hot or cold? Where does it live? How does it move?