May 30, 2018, by brzmjb1
University of Nottingham Sport – Volunteer of the Month (April)
University of Nottingham Sport’s Leadership Academy offers students the opportunity to develop their leadership skills and make a real contribution to their local community.
With more than 120 students now part of the Academy, the programme continues to grow with the addition of exciting new opportunities planned for the summer term. Our Volunteer of the Month award provides a great opportunity to show case the great work happening thanks to our students.
Each month we’re showcasing one volunteer who has demonstrated an exceptional commitment to making a difference in their local community, both on and off-campus.
April Volunteer of the Month – Caroline McKee Wood
Caroline is the Inclusive Officer in the Equestrian club and her role includes running horse riding sessions for students with disabilities and mental health conditions.
These inclusive sessions include transport provided for by the Estates team, 30 minutes of riding, then the coffee and cake in the café at Scropton, a stables that is specific for Riding for the Disables. The club caters for a range of disabilities, so problem solving is a massive part of Caroline’s responsibility. The role has meant that Caroline has had to think outside the box and react on the spot when difficult circumstances arise in facilitating and supporting the sessions.
Speaking about her role as a volunteer she said, “Volunteering with the Equestrian Club has been the most enriching experience. I’ve gained essential skills such as the confidence to be welcoming and passionate in all settings. I’ve had the opportunity to work with many different people and experience working with children with complicated disabilities, to adults who have been participating with Riding for the Disabled for many years. You can really see the life changing impact horse riding has.”
“Many individuals volunteer because they want to help people, however what most do not expect is that the people help you too. I can honestly say that there is no better feeling in seeing the huge difference that the horse riding sessions make in rider’s lives. I am so inspired by all of the riders who have overcome so many barriers to get where they are today, and they always come with a smile on their face. Giving back to them and making the sessions the best they can be is my aim every session.”
“I’ve also had the opportunity to talk to other universities about the Inclusive Horse Riding Sessions too. Myself, Susie (president) and Hannah Webber spoke to sport committees at the University of Sheffield about how to make sport more inclusive and engage with many more students. Then, a few months later I put on my own Inclusive Horse Riding Conference. It was amazing to be able to speak about how much volunteering builds bridges from all aspects of the Equestrian Club.”
“It is an honour to be given Volunteer of the Month by UoN Sport. I would like to thank Hannah Webber for her constant guidance, advice and help with inclusive sessions right from the very beginning. I’d like to encourage anyone who is interested in volunteering with RDA or setting up their own inclusive sessions to just do it! It is the most amazing experience that you will take forward throughout life.”
As a thank you, Caroline will receive a gift voucher from our partners at the Clubhouse Café in David Ross Sports Village. From everyone at University of Nottingham Sport – well done and thank you Caroline!
Interested in volunteering with our Leadership Academy? We’ve got a range of exciting opportunities coming up including Tri Campus Games and our new Laureus Sport for Good programme! To find out more and register your interest visit: http://uonsportleaders.com