A Day in the Life of a Bute Park Volunteer – Rachael


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In the lead up to International Volunteer Day on Sunday 5 December, Bute Park is celebrating its volunteers who have been busy working hard to make the Cardiff city centre park safer and cleaner for residents and visitors.

To celebrate, we're sharing the stories of Bute Park volunteers each week on Cardiff Newsroom and our social media channels - just search #WorkingForCardiff and #ButeParkVolunteers

Rachael volunteered as a photographer of events and Bute Park while studying Photography at the University of South Wales.

Why did you choose to volunteer with Bute Park?

I originally decided to join because I enjoy photographing nature. However, after taking photos of people for the park, I started to prefer that. It allows me to do photography without it being for coursework and in general it is just nice to get away from uni work for a bit. It is a nice stress relief and I like the fact that I am helping out. As I used to help out with a guide group at home, it also seemed like the right fit.

How did you hear about the role?

I first joined as part of a university project the park had with University of South Wales in my first year.  Afterwards Meriel (Bute Park Education Officer)contacted the university and said she would like to have some student photographersto take pictures of the Education Centre's events and the park.I also did a one-week work placement at the park and worked collaboratively with Meriel. This placement made me want to continue volunteering after the end of placement.

Do you have any preferences on what to capture?

Before volunteering at the park, I actually didn't like taking photos of people's faces, but now I prefer it. Faces are so expressive and interesting to look at. I also like to take photos outside, as it feels less intrusive and the children just do their own thing. They rarely notice me capturing the moment, which creates some lovely images. It is also fun to photograph a mixture of people, both children and adults, especially when parents get involved in the activities such as those over half term.

What did you enjoy the most about volunteering?

It is nice to give something back to the community, in this case my photos. It is also always great to see my photos being used on social media, the park's website or on banners and posters. It makes me feel like I am contributing to it all and am part of it.

If you're interested in volunteering in Bute Park, contact theEducation Officer on 029 2078 8403 or email the website