Volunteer’s week is a national scheme set up to celebrate and learn about the fantastic work volunteers do this and every week. Bath Rugby Foundation is an independent charity that relies on the support of volunteers. Without our volunteer coaches, admin staff or bucket shakers (to name a few), we simply couldn’t exist. So this Volunteer’s Week we want to say thank you to all of our volunteers – and tell you a few of their stories.
Jan is one of our fantastic volunteers who keeps the Foundation ticking. Jan has worked in a number of roles from banking to being a school burser. She joined us in 2013 and supports the fundraising team in carrying out their various events and challenges. Whether coordinating 70 cyclists in a ride across Ireland or sending out running tops to hundreds of Bath Half Marathon runners – Jan helps us to keep on top of our fundraising events.
“I’m very happy to give my time to the Foundation because I have a passion for making a difference to children and young people’s lives especially those less fortunate than others. I am happy to help in what ever way within the Foundation I can but my main responsibilities see me lending a hand to the fundraising team in putting on the biggest and best events and challenges. I find seeing the impact on our participants hugely rewarding”
Whether standing in the cold cheering for participants in our Men’s Walk or helping runners to prefer for the Bath Half, Wendy is always happy to lend a hand for Bath Rugby Foundation.
“I was first introduced to Bath Rugby Foundation during a networking event many years ago. I later attended the Awards dinner and was blown away by the work they do with children of all ages. It was then I felt I wanted to help in some way. After chatting with the team about what I could do, I organised a charity golf day at Bath Golf Club. I was privleged to work with the Bath Rugby Foundation team who volunteered their time on the day, making it a huge success. The staff at the Foundation are so passionate about what they do, it was great to work with them. We raised over £4,000 and I have done further fundraising throughout the past year or so. I support the Foundation for various reasons: being a local charity, and the amazing and rewarding work they do. They are an amazing team who are there to support you with your fundraising.”
Ex Bath and England legend Duncan Bell is ambassador of the Bath Rugby Foundation Move like a Pro programme. Alongside his full time job, Duncan volunteers his time to make the Move like a Pro programme a success. From press interviews to recruit men onto the programme, to attending and coaching at sessions to being an active member of the Move like a Pro Facebook group. Duncan has become one of the gang, which really adds to the experience of our participants.
“It’s been nothing but a positive experience and I hope everyone else would say the same thing. Everyone has bought into it and everyone is becoming more active, me included! Rugby has been a huge part of my life and I am grateful to the Foundation for helping it to continue to be so. I have played rugby since nine and it’s been a massive part of my life. I could not imagine my life without rugby while others have not picked up a ball before. It’s a brilliant way of bringing people together. The cliché is that it’s a game for all shapes and sizes but it’s so true. The camaraderie it brings – you have 15 guys working their guts off for each other – there’s no better team sport in the world. It brings the best out of people. It’s not just that we are active – we are definitely not running marathons – we are getting together and having fun and playing touch rugby. I have been trying to get as involved as I can in anything to do with mental health following my own experiences and I jumped at the chance to work with Bath Rugby Foundation and Move Like A Pro, it’s a great thing. Bath know about my situation and I wanted to lend my experience. Obviously from the mental health perspective it’s a safe zone, a lot of the guys have been through a similar experience to me and have suffered from anxiety or depression. But you don’t have to be overweight or have mental health issues, if you want to have a run around and have a good time there are guys getting fit and active because it’s a good environment to be in.”