Church History Museum seeks volunteers

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    By CLAUDIA LORENZANA

    The Museum of Church History and Art in Salt Lake City is looking for volunteers to serve as tour guides and assistants beginning in January 1998.

    According to a press release, the museum, at 45 No. West Temple Street, is seeking approximately 80 volunteers to help with presenting tours, greeting visitors, answering questions at the museum’s information desk, working in the gift shop and participating in several other volunteer programs.

    Jennifer Lund, the museum’s curator of education, said the museum will offer classes to help the qualified candidates prepare for their responsibilities as volunteers. In class, volunteers learn about the background of the museum’s exhibits and how to plan and prepare tours.

    Classes also include training for outreach programs, where museum volunteers visit local schools and teach third- and fourth-graders about Utah history and Native American art.

    Sandra Fraser, a museum volunteer of seven years, said tour guides also get to participate in a variety of other activities, such as a museum puppet show that highlight pioneer handcart experiences told through the eyes of children.

    “This is a wonderful thing for people to do who love to teach,” Fraser said.

    The museum requires the volunteers to commit to a period of two years and to work one four-hour shift a week, or every other week for those with rigorous schedules. Service opportunities on Saturdays are also available to help accommodate work schedules.

    According to Lund, volunteers provide an invaluable service to the museum and keep it running smoothly.

    “Volunteers are the lifeblood of the museum,” Lund said.

    Current volunteers, such as Fraser, said serving at the museum is a rewarding experience for both the museum and volunteers.

    “I get to answer a lot of interesting questions and meet people from all over the world,” Fraser said.

    Ruth Biddulph, a museum volunteer of six years, said being a tour guide at the museum has also enabled her to learn more about church history and teach people about their heritage.

    “I would recommend this to anyone who likes to read and study, and enjoys talking to people,” Biddulph said.

    Interested applicants should call 240-4615 for more information and to set up an interview. Applications for the tour guide training program must be in by Dec. 5.

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