Work with Partner Organization

Once you have conducted a site visit and decided to proceed with your partner organization, you need to start laying out the logistics of the day. Adequate and appropriate space to carry out the workshop is, of course, absolutely essential. You should ensure that the proposed space:

  • Is available free of charge
  • Is available two hours before the workshop and two hours after
  • Ideally, will be accessible at least one day prior to the workshop for set-up of tables, bringing in supplies, etc.
  • Ideally, is close to collection storage; if not, there is easy access for bringing in materials (i.e., a loading dock or ramp, a freight elevator where relevant)
  • Is adequately heated or air-conditioned, and adequately lit
  • Has sufficient power outlets for 10-15 laptops, and a few lightboxes, viewers, etc.
  • Has bathrooms and space for volunteers to eat lunch
  • Ideally, has free parking and/or where relevant, access to public transportation

The amount of space needed depends on the number of potential volunteers, which depends on the size of the collection. In other words, it varies. A diagram of a potential workspace is attached. It is helpful when inspecting the space to envision the tasks for the workshop. Typically, you will need space for several phases of work:

  • Initial triage (sorting through collection and setting basic priorities)
  • For film or for tapes that are very dirty, a separate area for inspection
  • Rehousing/cataloging

Each of these stations should have space for at least two large (3’ x 6’, roughly) tables, for a total of six tables. The tables should be set up so participants can work on both sides, and the tables can accommodate “staging” of materials at each station. The description below of the workshop process will provide more details as to how the space should be laid out.

Timeline

As noted above, depending on whether the workshop is part of a larger event, such as the AMIA conference, the timeline will vary widely. Some communities will have a core set of moving image archivists who are dedicated to this type of work; other communities may need the infusion of the AMIA membership visiting their community for the AMIA annual conference. Some organizations have a well-established set of volunteers they can call on, and other may need to do recruitment. Working back from the date of the workshop and setting benchmarks for each of the major tasks will help determine whether the partnership will work.

Confirming roles and responsibilities and next steps

A written Site Visit Report is critical at this point, in order to organize and share information about the proposed partner organization. (A sample site visit report is included as an appendix.)

Toward the end of the meeting, you can provide the organization a copy of the Statement of Agreement. This agreement (a sample is included as an appendix) lays out the different roles and responsibilities for the workshop. If the committee rep needs to consult with the committee before committing to the site, this step can be done later.

Once the organization is confirmed, set up a conference call with the organization’s participating staff and your planning committee. This will allow for a more detailed discussion of how the workshop will proceed, get everyone to get on the same page, and clear up any questions.

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