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Oral history – volunteer training

By Sinéad Breen Donegal PRO Tue 15th Nov

Oral history – volunteer training
Oral history – volunteer training

Ulster GAA are liaising with the Red Cross to provide volunteers from any interest GAA clubs to get training on collecting and recording oral history. Full details of the press release and contact details are below.



Message re: “Our Stories – Our Times” Project
A Chairde,
Would you like to gain skills and experience in the recording of oral history which you could take back to your own GAA club? Are you interested in the history and heritage of Ulster?
“Our Stories – Our Times” is a Red Cross oral history project made possible by a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The project aims to capture 100 narratives related to the work of the Red Cross in the North of Ireland (and cross-border work as well) and will train up to 50 volunteers in heritage and oral history skills. Our archive will be made accessible with the assistance of our partners, we want the archive not merely to recount the work of the Red Cross but to challenge ideas and identities and engage new audiences.
As part of that work the Red Cross are seeking volunteers and participants!
Why Volunteer?
Volunteers will receive training via an oral history crash course delivered by Queen’s University Belfast’s Dr. Sean O’Connell. Training covers technical and theoretical aspects of oral history and will enable volunteers to leave more confident in their interviewing and audio-visual skills as well as their understanding of engaging with heritage material. These skills will enable volunteers to return to their own clubs and communities and capture narratives important to them. Additional, voluntary training will focus on this and ongoing support will be provided by the project manager.
For more on the value of oral history to the GAA please see the GAA Oral History Project and Hurling and Us, County Kilkenny’s recent oral history podcast.
Volunteer Commitment
We ask that volunteers are able to offer at least 3 to 4 days of their time between now and June 2023: this includes a day-long training session and the time to conduct at least two interviews for the “Our Stories – Our Times Project”. You will need to stay engaged with the project via communication from the project manager. You will be asked to travel, in pairs, to locations agreed with participants to conduct interviews (reasonable travel will be reimbursed in line with BRC policy).
At this stage there are two scheduled training sessions to choose from: November 18th and December 9th at the Innovation Factory, Springfield Road, Belfast.
Further sessions are planned for January in Derry with a fourth session TBA depending on demand.
This is open to anyone of any experience level. But spaces are limited to 20 per training session! Any questions, please contact the project manager, Sam Guthrie (

Get involved!

If you’re interested in volunteering please send all expressions of interest (EOIs) to Sam Guthrie, Project Manager “Our Stories – Our Times” via Please include the following information:
A brief statement of your interest and suitability
Contact details for two referees (to your character and suitability)
Your name, address, and contact phone number

Optional: Your club affiliation and interest in follow up support for oral history at the club

Participants: Still got a story to tell?
Can’t volunteer but have something to say? Participants in “Our Stories – Our Times” are those individuals telling their stories to our volunteers. Participants could be anyone with a story to tell about how the work of the Red Cross as impacted their (or their family’s) lives. We are looking for people who have volunteered with or been assisted by the Red Cross who want to tell their story through oral history interview.
Anyone who has a story to tell should contact the project manager, Sam Guthrie, via email ( Additionally, you can contact Sam should you have documents or objects related to the Red Cross that you are interested in share with, or donating to, the project.
Thank you
We’re excited about what this project will capture and I’m excited about the opportunity to spread skills in oral history throughout the community!
Kind regards,
Sam Guthrie
Project Manager, “Our Stories – Our Times”
also of East Belfast GAA
By Sinéad Breen Donegal PRO Tue 15th Nov

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