Hello Fordingbridge Rugby Club. I am the Volunteer Co-ordinator for the club and have been carrying out the role for the past three months. At the club’s recent AGM, on 3rd June, I delivered a presentation regarding the role of volunteers within Fordingbridge Rugby Club and how important they are. Please find attached to this article the slides from the presentation.
I wanted to demonstrate how the club has grown over the years, where we are now in terms of volunteers and where we need to grow. With over 500 members of the club, it takes a lot to organise this many people; to get them to where they are supposed to be at the right time, whether they are training, playing or watching rugby. The amount of organisation that goes on behind the scenes is incredible. SO! One of the first jobs in my new role was to highlight how big our band of volunteers is. You will see from the presentation slides that we have:
• 11 Board members, although the role of Director of Rugby is currently vacant.
• 20 non-Board members - these may fluctuate occasionally.
• 41 volunteer roles within the Minis section and 16 volunteer roles in the Junior. With over 200 players, the Youth sections are the biggest part of Fordingbridge Rugby Club and the number of volunteers needed to run it reflects this.
• There are then 9 roles in the senior teams, although this can fluctuate depending on how many coaches the teams have in a season.
So, we have a total of 97 volunteer roles to run this club and, at the moment, 66 people are filling them. We do have some vacancies, but also a lot of people double, and triple, up to cover a variety of roles.
Having limited time in the presentation, I was only able to touch on a couple of vacant roles we have at the club:
• COACHES: One of the advantages of coaching at a relatively small club like ours is that you can take your coaching as far as you want it to go. If you just want to stay in the Minis, that’s fine. At the Minis level there is a comprehensive and thorough coaching programme available from the RFU. Should you wish to go onto Juniors and Colts with your age group you can develop your coaching skills even further with an array of courses available for Junior rugby. It is important that your skills develop and grow as your age group does so that you are teaching them the safest and most up-to-date techniques and playing skills. Also, if you are confident in what you are delivering, this will be reflected by the players on the field of play. Please remember that the club reimburses costs upon completion of courses.
• MINIS: Regarding the gaps in coaching roles, you will notice in the Minis we need some coaches in next season’s U12s. Although we have some plans in place to address this for the beginning of the season and we are working with Hampshire RFU to assist in player recruitment in this age group, we need consistent coaches for the longer-term and it is still something that Dennis Cranch, the age-group and myself are working on. Any assistance in this area would be gratefully received.
• JUNIORS: Within the Juniors, although there are not necessarily any ‘gaps’ as such in the coaching teams, there is always room for ‘fresh blood’ to deliver the odd specialised session. I do address the senior men playing cohort when I say this. You may feel that coaching the younger ones seems like a large commitment to become a ‘coach’ for these age groups. However, what about looking at it from a different point of view; could you spare one or two Sundays throughout the season if we were to combine a couple of age groups for you to do a kicking session with? You would have support of the main coaches for these age groups and would not be on your own with the players. Or, could you do once every three or four Sundays and deliver a forwards’ session for some of the age groups. If you were so inclined, we can get you attending the RFU training courses to give you some confidence in delivering these sessions. Additionally, these training courses may even enhance your own playing through the knowledge and understanding you gain. If you have ever thought about doing some coaching but are concerned about the level of commitment or what you think may be expected please do speak to me about it and we can look at what the options are. And I can tell you that the lads would be really pleased to have Senior players coming down and teaching them some of their own skills. Plus, it helps each partner learn about the different parts of the club and feel included within our One Club.
WHY GET INVOLVED IN VOLUNTEERING:
Volunteering can be beneficial in a variety of ways, such as:
• Gain confidence. …it can help you gain confidence by giving you the chance to try something new and build a real sense of achievement.
• Meet people. It can help you meet different kinds of people and make new friends.
• Make a difference. It can have a real and valuable positive affect on people, communities and society in general.
• Be part of a community. Volunteering can help you feel part of something outside your friends and family.
• Learn new skills. It can help you learn new skills, gain experience and sometimes even qualifications.
• Take on a challenge. Through volunteering you can challenge yourself to try something different, achieve personal goals, practice using your skills and discover hidden talents.
• Have fun! Regardless of why people are doing it, most volunteers have a great time.
SO, YOU THINK YOU MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN VOLUNTEERING……
• WHAT SORT OF SKILLS ARE WE LOOKING FOR? Enthusiasm is key. Not everyone is an organiser or likes doing paperwork, but equally not everyone enjoys getting wet and muddy on a Sunday morning; there is a role for everyone. Fordingbridge RFC are looking for people to assist in a variety of different roles in the club, from coaching or offering First Aid support in the Minis' section on a Sunday morning to organising social and fundraising events for the club.
• WHAT TIME COMMITMENT IS INVOLVED? In terms of time commitment, this varies on the role that you will be doing. I always say a minimum of two hours a week. But if you are able to give four, or even six hours a week, I will ensure that I fill it! It is important that our workforce is diverse so if you can spare a couple of hours a week, we can find the role that suits your skills and experience.
• WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? If you are interested in helping out in the club, please contact me ( 07856 839985 or firstname.lastname@example.org ). Most roles will involve a police check, attendance of a safeguarding awareness course and completion of the on-line concussion and head injury awareness course, HEADCASE, plus specialised training for certain roles in the club.
Finally, although I am the Volunteer Coordinator, we are all responsible for spreading the word about being part of this great club.
ONE CLUB, YOUR CLUB!