Feb 212018
It was a chilly Saturday morning in February when we loaded up the fun bus (with essential provisions of Costco pastries, sweet selections, flasks and travel mugs) to head off to Birmingham for the 1st conference organised for Run Group volunteers by England Athletics.

Just over an hour and a half of driving, one toilet stop, two drinks services and one detour thanks to SatNav we arrived in drizzly Birmingham for the #TeamSpiritConf2018 which was attended by over 200 volunteers involved in athletics (as coaches, ParkRun volunteers, officials and Run Leaders).

The event started with some talks by Donna Fraser (400m legend) and England Athletics CEO Chris Jones, then we were all off to our pre-selected workshops (as there was 7 of us attending, we managed to do pretty well and covered most of the topics between us). The workshops included – Communication, Fundraising, role of the Volunteer Co-ordinator, building personal resilience & managing stress and how to create an inclusive environment.

After lunch there was an activity around the tables in the Great Hall, we met some lovely people from Didsbury Runners group (we even managed to put the Liverpool/Manchester divide to one side). It was interesting to hear stories and get some ideas from the other groups about how their groups operate (and we definately took some ideas which we will be “borrowing” for our own group).

We then headed off to another workshop (again we had all managed to pick different sessions to attend) these included – how to have difficult conversations, the power of mindfulness, recruiting and supporting volunteers, involving & supporting young people and how to create a great atmosphere for volunteers.

Unfortunately, we left just before the end (so as to avoid the traffic home), so we all piled back into the fun bus and headed back to Liverpool.

We all picked up lots of really good ideas and suggestions for improvements which will make our Run Club even more brilliant than it already is………….so watch this space for updates over the coming few months

If you would be interested in joining our Run Club, we meet every Tuesday from 6:15pm.