Giving up time to give to sports communities | VOLUNTEERS

LEADING THE WAY: Yankalilla Netball Club president Trish Hogben says the club runs so smoothly due to the work put in by the countless number of volunteers, including the committee. Photo: Dani Brown.
LEADING THE WAY: Yankalilla Netball Club president Trish Hogben says the club runs so smoothly due to the work put in by the countless number of volunteers, including the committee. Photo: Dani Brown.

YANKALILLA – Every group of volunteers needs someone to step up to the plate and lead them through the course of their work.

People like Yankalilla Netball Club president Trish Hogben are invaluable to their organisation or club.

For a sporting club, there are many hard yards put in before, during, and after a day of games, and more often than not it is the behind-the-scenes work that keeps a club ticking. 

On game day, everyone sees – and is grateful for – the work of the volunteer coaches, team managers, umpires, scorers, and timers. But in the background, Trish said, there are people running around keeping everything flowing smoothly. She said game day was the easiest part because everyone knows their role.

“You might do six hours of physical work, but behind the scenes you’ve got to work out what you need, buy it, do rosters… you add up the volunteer work that’s done not on game day and it’s huge,” she said.

“It’s not that it’s monumental for any one person, but it’s still a lot of man hours that you don’t see.”

It is the first year Trish has been the president. She said it was a “fairly cruisy” role due to a hugely supportive committee of 17 volunteers. Trish was on the committee for at least six years, including when she held the vice-president seat. The committee roles range from secretary and treasurer to egg and bacon co-ordinator and fundraising co-ordinator. 

“We know exactly what our jobs are and everyone does them, it’s a really good club for you to become president of,” she said.

During a day of games, Trish “fills in the gaps” of what needs to be done.

“I don’t necessarily have a designated role. If we’re short in the canteen, I’ll fill in for half an hour,” she said.

She said in the last 15 years, there was only one year where she wasn’t part of a sporting committee. She is a life member of Yankalilla Cricket Club and has been on the club committee in a number of positions.

“I do it to stay involved with my children and have a relationship with them. You have to show them you’re interested and you care – I think (volunteering) goes hand-in-hand with it,” she said.

“You have a much greater appreciation for the sport itself, the environment you’re in, if you know what happens behind-the-scenes.”

She said volunteering is a feel-good way to help the community.

“It’s like when you hold a door open for someone; you didn’t have to to do it, but you feel good for doing it. It’s a much better feeling than when you’re driving out complaining about how the coffee tasted,” Trish said.

This story Giving up time to give to sports communities | VOLUNTEERS first appeared on The Times.