This year we’re once again celebrating Volunteers’ Week, saying thank you to those who support our sport all year round and those who have been supporting the response to the pandemic over recent months.
Throughout the week we are going to be sharing stories from our volunteers through our social media channels to highlight some of the great work taking place – whether that’s through fixing bikes for key workers, supporting local foodbank projects or continuing to dedicate their time to cycling roles.
Breeze Champion Frances Kelly from Lincolnshire has clocked up over 1,000 miles couriering material for medical scrubs across the county. You can watch her video below.
British Cycling Chief Executive, Julie Harrington, said:
“In what has been a really difficult period for the entire country I have continually been amazed and heartened by the manner in which the cycling world has rallied to support vital causes in our communities. At a time of great need for many our clubs, groups and members have risen to the challenge, and this week we want to pause to say thank you for their selflessness, ingenuity and determination.
“I know that so many of our volunteers are chomping at the bit to get back to leading rides, supporting local races and developing the next generation of young riders. We are working incredibly hard to ensure our sport and activities can return safely as soon as Government guidance allows, and I want to thank them for their continued patience and understanding as we work through this.”
Last year over 13,000 British Cycling members volunteered their time to cycling, and a British Cycling survey found that those who do so believe that it has helped their willingness to try new things, connectivity with others, to develop new friendships, ability to achieve goals and improved their confidence.
If you’d like to know more about volunteering opportunities with British Cycling, click here.
Clubs go virtual!
Zwift rides, virtual coaching sessions and online socials are just a few of the ways clubs have kept their members busy and active. Clubs such as Dartmoor Velo – CareControlSystems, Sprockets Cycle Club, East Bradford CC and Leicester Forest Rockets CC are among those that have offered weekly coaching sessions for their youngsters to get involved. Hillingdon Slipstreamers and London Dynamo have worked together for their sessions, getting to know new riders, sharing tips on safeguarding, tech, ideas, opportunities and innovation to improve their offer.
Helen Jackson at Leicester Forest Rockets CC said:
“Personally, I volunteer to do these sessions because I really enjoy seeing the joy on the children’s faces when they achieve something they have been working hard at. When lockdown was announced and we could no longer run our fortnightly sessions, I wanted to offer more for our riders.”
Supporting the pandemic response
Other clubs have opted to direct their energy towards the pandemic response. Banbury Star Cyclists’ Club set up their own prescription delivery service in Oxfordshire alongside a local running club, Banbury Harriers Athletics Club, while Mid Devon Cycling Club (MDCC) has upwards of 30 members working in front line roles helping COVID-19 patients. They initiated a fundraising campaign to purchase Skin Deep cream for the carers of COVID-19 patients, and the creams have been sent to the NHS locally and to carers at local care homes, including “Harbour Rise”, where life-long member John B is a resident.