Ageing and Museums
Source: Age Friendly Museums Network.
Ageing and Museums, National Museum Directors Council (UK) newsletter, June 2016
The Age Friendly Museum Network, founded by the British Museum, has published a new report exploring multiple aspects of how older people use museums. The UK’s Ageing Population: Challenges and opportunities for museums and galleries looks at issues from volunteering to donation, illness and disability to intergenerational work. It tracks UK demographics in some detail – older people are not only living longer but also becoming more culturally diverse.
A typical volunteer in the museums, libraries and archives sectors is older, practices a religion, has academic qualifications and internet access. Case studies include: Manchester Jewish Museum, where an intergenerational project brought together ten young unemployed people with older volunteer tour guides to learn skills; Islington Museum who worked with the charity Sense on a 10-week programme for people over 50 with dual sensory impairment; and Glasgow Museums who developed its Day Out scheme to enhance visits of grandparents with their grandchildren.
The report finds many positives commenting, “museums are constantly being asked to do more with less, but this report indicates that there can be a double dividend – where museums and older people enrich each other and their local communities.”
Read more about some Australian ageing programs: https://museumvictoria.com.au/education/outreach-program/outreach-program-adult/
The Bigger Story: Running workshops for people with dementia, National Museum of Australia Blog, 13 August 2015