Photo of Sam Bowen a white woman with long blonde hair wearing a black top and smiling. She stands in front of a AV screen with a picture of a boy raising his hand and the words Quick fire questions

I am an experienced trainer (having done this in various roles for over 25 years). I confidently know how to ‘read the room’ even online and make sure that all delegates feel involved and have the opportunity to contribute (but respect those who do not wish to). My training sessions are always practical, thought provoking and inspirational. I only believe in delivering training that is going to be useful and support an attendee’s action following the session. My aim is that my training gives them greater understanding, more confidence and enthusiasm to start or develop their work further.

As well as offering training directly as a freelancer I run sessions for other organisations as part of their national and privately commissioned programmes:

I am a course director for GEM (Group for Education in Museums) running a range of sessions including the popular four week-long ‘building SEND confidence’ course’.

“Sam brings her powerful lived experience testimony, along with her in depth knowledge of the museum sector to encourage new ways of working that enable positive and sustainable experiences for children and young people with SEND. Partnering with GEM, Sam has provided impactful training for hundreds of museum learning professionals in all areas of the UK. Sam’s website, launched in February 2022, has become a valuable resource for the sector, with its valuable information on the need for SEND inclusion, how to work with SEND young people and valuable case studies and links to enable colleagues to connect and learn from each other’s practice.” Rachel Tranter, GEM

I’m am also an affiliate consultant trainer for Kids in Museums and have developed training customised to their client’s brief as well as created and running training as part of their national programme. I am also a shortlisting judge for the Accessible Museum category of the Kids in Museums Family Friendly awards.

“Sam has worked with Kids in Museums over the past three years. During this time, she has become a hugely valued partner for our training, having developed three sessions around the crucial issue of SEND inclusion in museums for children, young people and families. Sam brings incredible expertise and tremendous passion for inclusion in museums. Her online courses are both inspiring and practical, providing museum staff with the tools and ideas to improve the accessibility of their museums. The feedback from attendees at Sam’s training is always excellent. Participants tell us they have built confidence and understanding as a result of attending, and always remark on Sam’s knowledgeability and approachability.”. Alison Bowyer, Kids in Museums

I have worked in all of the Museum Development regions, delivering training to their museums and speaking at regional conferences. I am also an approved EDI mentor for Museum Development UK.

I trained the National Trust UK wide consultants team, who lead on supporting all the properties in their portfolio. I also work with individual National Trust and National Trust Scotland properties to train their teams, mentor and consult on projects, review and develop learning accessible interpretation resources.

“You were absolutely brilliant today, the feedback I’ve had about your session has been fantastic – no doubt more to follow. You took my brief and completely nailed it. I can’t thank you enough.” Lawrence Roots, National Trust

I have also worked with museums internationally, delivering training online (always in English!) most recently for the Kanal Centre Pompidou in Brussels.

I regularly work with museums and galleries on a 1:2:1 basis to train their teams or support their own in house training and am happy to develop any bespoke offer covering SEND access either to the specific needs of the site or the team.

Previous themes include:

Introduction to SEND and mapping change in your museum

Welcoming SEND in your museum – front of house staff confidence training

How to develop sensory back packs

How to create Visual stories

Open ended craft activities and practical ideas for engagement

How to advocate for SEND in your museum/gallery

My training sessions typically last between 2 and 2.5 hours and are delivered online, but can easily adapt to a hybrid environment of some online delegates and some in person at the same time.

For museums/galleries in London and the South East, I can if preferred deliver training in person. Further afield, this is less cost effective and not as climate friendly, so more suited to link it with a site visit or larger project.

Please get in contact to discuss your training needs with me and how I can create a bespoke offer that works best for your organisation.