I’m too busy. I don’t have the right skills or knowledge. I won’t know anyone. These are just some of the reasons why you might decide against volunteering. But even the smallest amount of support can make a huge difference to organisations which rely on volunteers to help them.
In the past I have helped out on school and local community centre committees but more recently I have joined British Dressage’s Eastern Region as the marketing representative. This was an ideal opportunity to combine my skills with my passion, and to get to know more people with a love of dressage in the region. I was worried about the time commitment and how I would balance that with managing my own business, but I was reassured that any time I could give would be gratefully received.
Volunteers are the lifeblood of British Dressage, like so many other equestrian disciplines. Each of the regional committees are run by volunteers and competitions simply wouldn’t be able to run without the scorers, stewards, runners, writers and many other supporters who give their time for the love of the sport.
Giving something back to a cause you are passionate about is a great feeling but there are all sorts of other benefits to volunteering. For example, having written for a judge at a competition, I gained a valuable insight into what the judge is looking for and how to ride tests more strategically to gain maximum points. There is so much you can learn from the people around you, so it’s a chance to improve your own knowledge and riding.
As part of National Volunteers’ Week, we are celebrating the vital contribution that volunteers make to British Dressage. You can find out more by visiting the Eastern Region’s Facebook page.