We want to support you, and we hope that by signposting to the following resources you will be able to seek out additional help and guidance as required.
Support within your organisation
Depending on the size of your organisation, you may have a dedicated Human Resources department that you should contact for an informal discussion.
Individual organisations may have networks to support employees who identify in a range of ways, such as LGBTQI+ or disability networks. If you have been bullied and feel it was a function of a protected characteristic, or you want to talk to others who may have had similar workplace experiences, then these groups may be useful.
Your organisation may have an occupational health service or an employee assistance programme in place, providing access to healthcare professionals, counselling, and other resources.
Your organisation may recognise a trade union, and all unions are likely to have guidance and access to specific support:
- University and College Union (UCU)
- Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS)
- Unite the Union
Freelancers may be members of other organisations, for example the Association of Independent Professionals and Self Employed (IPSE), and specific to the museum sector is Museum Freelance, who champion freelancers and consultants working in the sector.
If you are a volunteer you are still able to join a union within your place of volunteering (see information about unions above).
Whilst the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) focuses on supporting organisations that are volunteer-led, you will also find more general guidance, thinking and support for volunteers. The equivalent in Scotland is the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO).
The Heritage Volunteering Group can support you with best practice when volunteering and can help you to collaborate and connect with others.
Grassroot organisations and networks
In addition to internal inclusion networks in your organisation, a number of grassroot organisations exist to support the sector:
- Museum Detox – a network for people of colour who work in museums, galleries, libraries, archives, and the heritage sector
- Museums as Muck – a network of working class people who work in museums and are advocating for change in the socioeconomic diversity of the sector
- Space Invaders – a campaign for change for women in museums and heritage
- The Neurodiverse Museum – established to change the way museums and the cultural sector approach neurodiversity
Community engagement and wellbeing
Culture Health and Wellbeing Alliance – representing everyone who believes that cultural engagement and participation can transform our health and wellbeing
Social Prescribing Network – a network supporting social prescribing around the world
GLAM Cares – a care and support network for gallery, library, archive and museum community engagement professionals
Other organisations and resources
Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD) – dedicated resources and insights into how organisations should be supporting and managing the workforce this time and throughout furlough
ACAS – Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service – the latest advice for employers and employees
Citizens Advice – find out more about your rights as an employee and how to approach problems at work
Museums Disability Collaborative Network – working to promote and embed inclusive practice in the heritage and cultural sector
Samaritans – providing support for a range of mental health issues (you can call 116 123, which is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year)
Time to Change – campaigning to change the way people think and act about mental health problems
Blurt Foundation – increasing awareness and understanding of depression
Anxiety UK – supporting and advocating for those suffering with anxiety, stress, anxiety-based depression or a phobia
Mental Health UK – supporting people affected by mental health problems
Mind – providing advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem, and undertaking key campaigning work
Museum 5 A Day – Learning Liaison Forum project to prioritise and champion the wellbeing of museum staff