Join In and BBC Get Inspired launch the #BigHelpOut
Ahead of BBC Sports Personality of the Year, Join In patron Eddie Izzard and Tanni Grey-Thompson launch #BigHelpOut with BBC Get Inspired.
Coaches and cheerleaders, guide runners and groundskeepers, referees and Rugby World Cup volunteers – these and thousands more keep sport thriving.
And you can be a part of it too.
Eddie Izzard says, “Real heroes don’t wear capes or masks, they’re in the community around us, helping out at local sports clubs and using their super skills to help with fundraising, coaching, social media and everything else it takes. But it’s not just the players that benefit, these local heroes also feel happier and healthier for helping out.”
What is the #BigHelpOut?
This year we want to take it a step further and find 10,000 helpers for local sport. In the lead up to BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2015, we’re going to promote and support local sports clubs all over the UK.
Multiple Paralympic gold medallist Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson said, “Volunteers have played a vital role in my career. Their motivation, dedication and commitment has helped me progress in sport and they continue to help athletes, at every level, to take part in and enjoy sport.”
How can I help the #BigHelpOut?
How else can I get into volunteering?
If you feel inspired by the #BigHelpOut campaign and wonder whether you have the time or knowledge for local sport volunteering, then good news – you do!
You can give a couple of hours whenever you’re needed or commit to regular sessions. You can be a keen first-timer or experienced helper. You can bring specialist skills or just muck in.
Seven out of 10 local sport clubs and groups in the UK say they need more volunteers, so there will be clubs in your area looking for help. And since every volunteer creates the capacity for 8.5 more participants, whatever help you can give will make a real difference.
If a regular commitment doesn’t work for you, maybe you’d like to volunteer at a large sporting event. These events rely on hundreds of people like you who give up their time and skills.
Why is volunteering good?
It won’t just be the club that feels the difference your volunteering will make – you’ll make a difference to yourself and your community.
People who volunteer in sport have higher self-esteem, emotional wellbeing and resilience than those who don’t volunteer, according to our Hidden Diamonds research. They are also more likely to feel proud of themselves, to believe what they do is important, and are less likely to worry.
Know an Unsung Hero?
Every year BBC Get Inspired also presents the Unsung Hero Award↑ at BBC Sports Personality of the Year, which recognises one individual who has made an outstanding volunteer contribution to sport. Denis Neenan, last years BBC Midland Sport’s Unsung Hero, agrees, “I have been a volunteer for more than 40 years and I’m still going strong. When I first started I could never have imagined the people I would meet and the places I would go through volunteering, it’s been incredible. If I had the chance to do it all again, I would.”
Let’s all pitch in for the #BigHelpOut!