The volunteering professionals part II
People’s work skills can be hugely beneficial to sports clubs. In the second part of our volunteering professionals blog, we see how three BT employees raise funds and balance the books.
Part 1 | Part 2
Full name: Anthony Raisbury
Day job: Former Management Accountant and now Sales Account Manager
Volunteers at: Welford Mixed Hockey Club
Coach is probably the first role people think of whenever sports volunteering is mentioned. However, there are dozens of other ways to make a difference. Accountancy, for example, is as important a role as any.
As Chairman of Welford H.C., Anthony Raisbury has many duties, including helping with the club’s finances. He explained, “With my background in accounting… I oversee the treasurer and run the yearly audit. It’s my job to ensure we are a self-sufficient club.”
Anthony tries to keep the monthly subs lower than nearby clubs. This involves both discipline and clever planning. “We have money coming in from lots of different routes – grants, fundraising events, club barbecues and member fees – so it’s important that I keep on top of the income vs expenditure and ensure the spreadsheets are all maintained and up to date.”
– Read Chris Mole’s tips to grow you club – or improve your sprint speed!
Full name: Ryan Heapy
Day job: Customer Service
Volunteers at: Bredbury and Stockport Amateur Boxing Club
Ryan raises funds for this small boxing club in Stockport and has big fundraising plans for the coming year.
Each month he organises a club raffle. Half the money raised goes into the prize kitty and the other half is used to buy much-needed kit and equipment.“Every penny counts,” Ryan said. “It might only raise £40 but that pays our electricity bill for the month.”
Ryan’s accounting background and the public-facing side of his job combine to make him a formidable fundraiser.
“I always try to come up with wacky ideas to raise money, from pyjama days in the office, to hair dying or leg waxing.”
“I’m in charge of charity fundraising for Sport Relief on behalf of the BT Stockport site,” he said. “I always try to come up with wacky ideas to raise money, from pyjama days in the office, to hair dying or leg waxing.
I have plans to do more fundraising at the boxing club, because I have so many ideas from all the things I’ve done at BT. It would be great to revamp the clubhouse or get some new equipment, so I’ll have to get my thinking cap on.”
The top skills needed
Employee volunteer pioneers BT conducted some research to understand which skills sports clubs and groups need most.
After receiving lots of responses, we found that fundraising and web design skills are increasingly in demand, while experienced coaches are also coveted.
We’ve listed the top seven, right, though it’s worth noting that clubs need many other types of volunteers, such as drivers, secretaries and first aiders.
Dean, grant writer
Full name: Dean Preston
Day job: Lead Channel Manager – Outbound Operations
Volunteers at: North Shields School of Boxing in Tyneside
Once upon a time, Dean Preston thought of himself purely as a coach. However, as time passed he realised his professional experience could be used to secure funds for the club.
“An application for funding can be difficult to write and requires a lot of research,” he said. “In my role at BT, I build business plans, write presentations, and provide call guides for the Product Sales team. These roles have given me the skills required to write successful funding application forms.”
Dean coaches a young boxer at North Shields
Dean’s grant writing skills bore fruit – in the form of new kit and equipment, which helps get the most out of boxing sessions. He continues to write application forms, reports and press releases to promote the club.
Not only does this volunteering work benefit North Shields School of Boxing; it also helps Dean. “It works both ways – the skills from my job help secure funding for the club, but the confidence I’ve gained from speaking to the kids I coach has helped me at work, when pitching to a tough crowd.”
– See how Dean makes a real difference in his community