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July 07, 2012

Giving Back to Your Sport!

So, what have you done lately?

Really! What have you done lately? First of all let me express my sincere appreciation and congratulations to all the volunteers out there who put in countless hours to help their club or sport. You know that without you your club would never survive. And I know you must be checking your forehead for fever at times when you wonder if your efforts are worth it. Trust me, they are. I can only relate the incredible experience this past two years at our own Curling Club where we essentially rose, homeless, out of the ashes to not only survive, but to almost double our membership to 380 members in just over a year! It could not have been done without the over 4000 volunteer hours put in by our club volunteers. But not everyone helps... or knows where to go to offer their help.

Most of the time you need only ask your club exec if there is a committee that you can work on... this may eventually lead to some provincial volunteer work... or maybe even a national program. There is always something that needs to be done... at any level! I have great respect for those who put in countless hours of volunteer work... these are the givers. Been there, done that... doin' that now. I saw the results of their efforts first hand at our local curling club the past few seasons. I have seen the efforts of family and friends throughout the years and admired them for their dedication, sometimes in the face of skepticism and/or criticism. I have occasionally wondered at the intentions of other "givers"... but never dwell on them for it is the true givers, those who give willingly of themselves that keep our sports going! These are the ones that deserve our attention and whom we should be using as examples.

– opportunities that will always exist, year in, year out. 

I realize that not everyone has the time or physical capability to assist with some tasks, but there are ready made opportunites available for each and every bowler, curler and golfer at their clubs, whether it be helping with a tournament, league, event or perhaps a building project or membership drive... or coaching program! These are the opportunities that will always exist, year in, year out. 

There are however other ways in each of our sports that we can open our doors to others and by so doing not only help them... but our own sports as well with the exposure we will be gaining... a good example of giving... and taking without actually taking anything! Charity curling bonspiels. bowls tournaments and golf scrambles are good examples of how we can help support local or national charities. I have recently heard of some bowls clubs who "get it" and are giving up their greens to help with a local charity. Well done! There are also instances of individuals making unselfish gestures that will help those less fortunate than ourselves. Kudos to you folks too!

You can read all about these efforts in our forum here. I would encourage you to post your own "giving" stories of things you or people you know have done to help out with your local community or club. Share with us how you felt while doing it... felt good, eh! I look forward to reading your accounts and sharing them with the rest of the sporting community.

Have a great day at whatever sport you play... and happy giving! ~ Dan

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