The Join In blog: Tagged "Commonwealth Games"

Fife star gymnastics

How volunteering solved an Enigma

Jennifer Mann knew there was the will for another gymnastics club in Fife. So she teamed up with her fellow volunteers to make it happen.

Four years ago Enigma Gymnastics Club, in Fife, was made up of just 13 teenage girls. Now the club boasts more than 200 members, both boys and girls, age 3-17. The growth and success of the club has been down to the hard work and dedication of volunteer Jennifer Mann. Jennifer hopes to inspire a new generation of young volunteers to continue this success and realise their sporting aspirations.

From ballet to gymnastics

Jennifer’s journey in gymnastics began aged just 6 years old when she swapped the ballet barre for the balance beam and joined her local gymnastics club, Kirkcaldy G.C. In her 30 years at the club, Jennifer took part as gymnast, assistant coach, class coach and, finally, as head coach. (more…)

Recent News

Michael Conlon
Michael Conlan and his father are Olympic-bound.

Michael Conlan – Paving the road to Rio in Northern Ireland

The Belfast boxer owes much of his Olympic success to the hard work of his father and a thriving grassroots culture.

Michael Conlan is Rio bound, but it didn’t look that way one Saturday afternoon. To qualify for the 2016 Games, the Belfast-born boxer needed to win in Venezuela and hope other results in the World Series of Boxing went his way.

In the end, fortune smiled on the Northern Irish bantamweight. After winning his bout, he heard news of a shock in Puerto Rico, where his much-fancied rival from Azerbaijan buckled to defeat.   (more…)

Could you meet your match volunteering?

Last year Ryan Postlethwaite logged onto the internet to look for matches. But he wasn’t looking for romance, he was looking for local volunteer opportunities. Six months on from Glasgow 2014, Ryan and girlfriend Charlie tell Join In how their experience as a Clyde-sider led to love.

Last year Ryan applied to be part of the 15,000 strong Commonwealth Games volunteer team. What he didn’t expect was that 330 miles away in Truro, his future girlfriend Charlie Tombs was also scrolling through the thousands of Join In opportunities and applying for the same role.


Join in the BBC Sports Personality Big Thank You!

Comedian and Join In patron Eddie Izzard led the nation’s biggest ever thank you to sport volunteers at this year’s BBC Sports Personality of the Year show.

Live from the pre-show red carpet, Eddie and some of the UK’s favourite sporting stars surprised remarkable volunteers with thank you phone calls from a golden phone box.

They also recorded this special film to spread their personal thank you messages to all the other incredible sport volunteers around the country.

Big Thank You goes global!


David Moorcroft’s Commonwealth Games memories

There are moments that shape the rest of your life.

One of those for me was the 1970 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh. I was 17 years old and a friend of mine and I made the journey to Edinburgh to witness a week or so of fabulous athletics.

It was my first experience of a major Games and of a large partisan crowd screaming for the local heroes. A Scot called Lachie Stewart won the 10,000m and the crowd went wild. Later in the week Ian Stewart (they weren’t related) won 5,000m gold and the crowd went ballistic.


Join In Local Leader Caz Lorenzo on the Queen’s Baton Relay

Join In Local Leader and long-time volunteer, Caz Lorenzo was nominated to be a baton bearer on the Commonwealth Games Queen’s Baton Relay. As Glasgow 2014 begins, she explains what it was like to be part of the ceremony and celebration in Kent.

Who could know that 5 June 2014 would turn out to be one of my most memorable days yet?

I first found out I’d been nominated to be a Queen’s Baton Bearer for the Commonwealth Games back on the 23 February but was sworn to secrecy until press release day on 16 April.

A group of us had been selected ‘in recognition of our contribution to sport, young people and the community’ – me, Mille Knight, the youngest ever GB Paralympian, volunteer John Simmonds, 17-year-old decathlete Lewis Church and headteacher Roland Gooding OBE.

Just a week before the day, we found out we’d be joined by Lizzy Yarnold, Olympic gold medallist in the skeleton bob, and Dame Kelly Holmes. (more…)

Phil the JILL’s Commonwealth Games Clyde-sider training

The Commonwealth Games begin in Glasgow on 23 July. Join In Local Leader Phil Madeley travelled to Glasgow for Clyde-sider training ahead of the Games, and to pick up his all-important uniform.

‘People Make Glasgow’ is the slogan that hits you when you arrive at Glasgow Central Station. The city is gearing up for the games in a big way. The streets are decked with flags, banners and logos. Clyde, the games mascot, can be found on most street corners.

Since my last visit, I have noticed a lot of work has gone on: buildings cleaned, subway improved, bus routes added and so forth. Glasgow is just about ready to welcome visitors from all over the Commonwealth.

Uniform identity

The collecting, and ultimately the wearing, of any uniform is a symbol of being part of a team or group, an identity and sense of responsibility.


Join In Local Leaders visit Downing Street for the Queen’s Baton Relay

Join In’s Local Leaders helped Prime Minister David Cameron welcome the Queen’s Baton Relay to Downing Street on its 70-nation journey around the world.

Twenty of our voluntary leaders witnessed the arrival of the Commonwealth Games torch, carried by Olympic boxing champion Nicola Adams and award-winning young cycling volunteer Molly Pattison.

Afterwards the group mingled with the Prime Minister, fellow volunteers and children from local sports clubs at a celebratory garden party at Number 10.

Olympian Nicola Adams talks with David Cameron at Downing Street

Olympian Nicola Adams talks with David Cameron at Downing Street

Join In’s 250 Local Leaders act as advocates for volunteering in their local communities and inspire others to get involved. The Prime Minister asked to meet a mix of our young Local Leaders, Sochi 2014 volunteers, Games Makers and future Clyde-siders.


Glasgow 2014: Clyde-sider Orientation Training

7th March 1952 was a momentous time in my life as that was the day I was born! Now 7th March 2014 another milestone on life’s journey is reached, as today I am heading to Glasgow as ‘Phil the JiLL’ for my Commonwealth Games Orientation Training!

As a Join In Local Leader, or ‘JiLL’, I was selected to be a Clyde-sider for the 2014 Commonwealth Games and this is a blog of that journey through the Spring and Summer of 2014. Any resemblance between the Commonwealth Games and Join In is purely coincidental, except any excuse to promote Join In can’t be wrong – I hope!