Spotlight on: Simon – Volunteering with Running!
This blog was written by Simon, a guardian currently living in Eltham and doing lots of running related volunteering.
Spotlight on: Simon
I am approaching my first year as a property guardian with Dot Dot Dot, and I have really enjoyed being able to enhance my volunteering work for running events and local groups. These events have included major city races (Virgin London Marathon, Vitality North London Half), local running club events (Mornington Chasers Regents Park series) and fantastic community initiatives like Parkrun.
Parkrun is a free weekly 5km event, organised entirely by volunteers and open to runners of all abilities and walks of life. Over 1000 parkrun events have been set up in parks across the world, and 61 of these are based in London, starting at 9am every Saturday, rain or shine. Volunteer roles include race directing, time keeping, course marshaling, run photography and barcode scanning (for recording positions and times).
The most exciting recent development in my volunteering experience has been my involvement with the Gladstone Parkrun guide running team, in Willesden Green. This event has three regular attendees who are either blind or partially sighted, and the volunteers have established a core team of guides to assist these runners around the undulating two-lap course. Parkruns are a great place to experience guide running for the first time (for the runner and the guide), as these events are rarely held near roads and will use a consistent, easily navigated route every week- perfect for building up your confidence, and to set both guide and runner a regular challenge and opportunity to improve their run.
If you are interested in learning how to be a guide runner, feel free to contact the Parkrun UK website. Experienced guide runners can be added to the UK Athletics Guide running database, and can be requested to attend training and race events.
So thanks to Simon! If you’re interested in becoming a Dot Dot Dot guardians like him, saving money on rent and volunteering locally, apply now.