Kids in Museums Manifesto
The Museum is proud to follow the the Kids in Museums Manifesto guidelines developed with children, young people and families and reflect what they feel makes museums welcoming and inclusive places. We are one of nearly 900 organisations that have signed up to show their commitment to welcoming visitors of all ages. Those guidelines are:
- Be welcoming.Being made to feel safe and welcome can make or break a family visit. Create an environment where families can explore, have fun, play and learn together. Ensure staff and volunteers provide a warm welcome and make interactions with all family members accessible, friendly and informative. Include things that can be touched and make labels clear to explain when they can’t. Welcome enthusiastic comments, always keep instructions positive and provide easy to read text for all ages.
- Be accessible to all. Ensure all visitors are equally supported and welcomed. Families face many challenges when visiting museums, including economic, language and cultural barriers. Consider the cost and practicalities of the whole museum visit from the perspective of a family. D/deaf, disabled and neurodivergent people may experience barriers to accessing your space, activities, displays and digital resources. Families need clear online information, such as an access page, to confidently plan their visit. Consider a full spectrum of access needs, review your provision and consult with a range of families about making a visit more accessible.
- Make it easy and comfortable. Families are more likely to stay longer if your facilities and spaces are family friendly. Provide seating for all generations to enjoy a rest, a quiet space and free wifi. Make pocket money items available in the shop. Can you make your café family friendly and reasonably priced, provide a picnic area or direct people to eateries nearby? Having baby changing facilities, a breastfeeding welcome attitude, and somewhere to keep buggies is important for those with younger visitors. Can you provide a Changing Places toilet or signpost visitors to the nearest facility?
- Remember families come in all shapes and sizes. Consider what different family members need from their visit and provide ways for them to enjoy themselves together. Family groups can be diverse, from large multigenerational families to single parents or carers. They can include under 5s, young people, children with additional needs, same-sex couples and grandparents. Reflect this diversity in your language, activities, displays and ticketing.
- Communicate well. Make sure you let families know everything you have to offer them. You can do this through outreach visits, posters and leaflets, and your website and social media. Provide easy to find pre-visit information online, information on arrival and a way for families to get in touch and give feedback. Make sure all your content is accessible. Represent a diverse range of families in your marketing images.
- Be an active part of your community. Young people and families want to see museums help tackle inequalities, support their wellbeing and take care of the local environment. Consult and collaborate with a diverse range of children, young people and families in your community as equal partners on events, displays and exhibitions. This will help you to make your site more relevant, reflect their stories and give this audience a stronger sense of ownership over their histories and heritage.
For more information visit the Manifesto page at Kid in Museums