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Id 544
Author Cantillon Z., Baker S.
Title DIY Heritage Institutions as Third Places: Caring, Community and Wellbeing Among Volunteers at the Australian Jazz Museum
Cantillon Z., Baker S.; DIY Heritage Institutions as Third Places: Caring, Community and Wellbeing Among Volunteers at the Australian Jazz Museum ;Leisure Sciences vol: issue: page:

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Abstract Community-based, do-it-yourself (DIY) archives and museums of popular music are cultural institutions that can serve important social and affective functions. In this article, we examine how DIY heritage institutions create a sense of community and promote wellbeing for their volunteers, operating as informal gathering spaces, or “third places.” Using the Australian Jazz Museum — a DIY popular music heritage institution run exclusively by volunteers, most of whom are older adults and retirees — as a case study, we explore how third place can manifest in such sites of serious leisure. Drawing on interview data, we discuss volunteers’ experiences of the AJM in relation to its sociality and affective atmosphere and the role this institution plays in their lives. In doing so, we analyse the characteristics which contribute to DIY heritage institutions as spaces for caring, community, and wellbeing. © 2018, © 2018 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


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One such shared characteristic is that the ongoing involvement of volunteers in the community heritage sector is motivated not only by the important work of preservation, curation, and display that they do, but by the social and affective benefits that go along with it. .
As such, on an individual level, engagement with third places can have positive effects on wellbeing by providing support networks and raising the spirits of participants, warding off stress, loneliness, and isolation (Oldenburg, 1999; Rosenbaum, 2006). .
What keeps volunteers coming to the museum regularly, then, is not only the important heritage work that they do, but the convivial, warm atmosphere of the place. .
By creating opportunities for volunteers and visitors to chat, laugh, and help each other out, DIY heritage institutions can serve vital roles in the lives of individual volunteers and in the broader community. .
In these institutions, the benefits of serious leisure extend far beyond cultural and heritage dimensions, working to enhance the overall wellbeing of those who engage with them..
Mavis then went on to explain that creating connections and forming bonds is one of the most rewarding aspects of her role hosting museum visitors and running tours allows plenty of opportunities to meet new people, and her fellow volunteers are a lovely, wonderful group to work with, and you get such a lot of benefit from it. .
In this article, we seek to examine how such benefits manifest in the specific context of a community heritage institution. .
Likewise, heritage institutions cannot be completely egalitarian in that (among other reasons, as described below) they require a certain amount of economic and cultural capital to access and meaningfully engage with them. .
Future research could expand the scope of this article by considering its key thematics in relation to mainstream, officially authorised heritage institutions, institutions focused on other (sub)cultural activities, and institutions in different locations across the globe. .