Volunteering – The Heart of Slipstreamers
Anyone who visits Slipstreamers to witness a Saturday session in action first sees and incredible number of focussed and driven youth having fun developing numerous bike handling skills. What is not immediately apparent is that everyone involved in the organisation of Slipstreamers is a volunteer. Do read the sections on the left to find out more about some of the awards our volunteers have won over the years, and the journeys of some of our members into adult volunteering.
To ensure we maintain the correct ratios of staff to riders, we actively support riders develop through a number of initiatives.
British Cycling Young Volunteer Scheme
Firstly, when a rider reaches the age of 14, we have found that although they still enjoy cycling as social activity they may not want to commit themselves to racing. In conjunction with British Cycling, we encourage riders to become Young Volunteers. Young Volunteers become mentors for younger riders, and begin to help out with a number of tasks within the club. Any time that is offered for volunteering is logged, and as different levels within the scheme are attained the requirements become more challenging. Apart from the benefits to cycling, Young Volunteers often use this scheme alongside The Duke Of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme as part of the community requirement. Volunteering experience is often looked for in both Employment and University applications – so again, very important to develop life skills as well as bike skills.
Slipstreamers Young Official Scheme
Slipstreamers is very much a family, and when a rider reaches 16 they have to leave us as a club member. However, we don’t want to lose out on the years of dedication that a rider has made, so our Young Official programme keeps the 16-18 year olds involved with the club. The Club in return, will support Young Officials 16-18 through a British Cycling Level One Coaching Award. This is the first step of the Coaching ladder where new coaches begin to learn teaching techniques as well as interacting with riders at an aspirational level.
Once a Young Official reaches 18, they will no longer be classed as youth, so will technically no longer be involved as a member. Again, the Club will support those looking to attain British Cycling Level Two Coaching Award, after which they may wish to stay on as a member of the Adult Coaching Staff.
Volunteering opportunities are not restricted to the youth. The club supports all aspects of volunteering covering such areas as:
- Sign-on Team
- Riding Helpers
- Coaching Staff
- First Aid
- Child Welfare and Protection
- as well as many other back office functions
If you feel you have something you could offer, please make yourself known to any club official. Click here to see who our current volunteers are, and here to read about some of the awards received by our amazing helpers!