Now we have deflated the finish gantry on the 7th, and my final, Clandon Park Run, I would like to say thank you to the 100 volunteers who have helped on the day – every year. When they agreed to help 7 years ago, many had no idea what was in store and I’m sure this is the only time they put on a high-viz, stand in a field and cheer. I would like to pay tribute to their loyalty.
The Clandon Park Run is like any other charity run. It attracts serious and fun runners and it relies on a lot of volunteers to hand out race numbers and marshal runners round the course. Compared to many charity runs Clandon needs a generous number of volunteers to look after the hundreds of under-18s that take part. What started as a school fundraiser has gained a life of its own as a community event and I think this is what has made it so popular. Every year we are reminded that the local and school communities want to be involved either to run or to volunteer and some volunteers keep coming back long after their children have left the school.
Thank you to all our volunteers – it has been a pleasure to work with you.
We try to look after our volunteers. Here are some of the things we have done that might have helped them to keep coming back:
- We tell volunteers what they will be doing in advance
- We describe the different roles and let them choose
- We tell them that the outside jobs may be in the rain and mud
- We tell them what hours we need them
- We prepare them
- In the first couple of years we held briefings.
- After that the majority were repeat volunteers and so we dropped the briefings
- We give “marshal captains” one to one training
- We tell everyone what to bring on the day
- And we give written instructions and a map
- We organise them on the day
- We put new race marshals near to experienced ones
- We put groups of volunteers under the leadership of “marshal captains” who check they know what they are doing
- We organise lift shares if needed
- We give everyone a drink and some cake!
- We say thank you afterwards and share some positive feedback
And to let the runners have the final word:
“I really enjoyed the race, and thought it was very well organised. The family particularly enjoyed the atmosphere.” One of the winners
“I wanted to thank you for hosting such a professional, friendly and superbly organised event. From the moment we arrived in your car park to the moment we drove away, the experience was a very special one. Thank you for all the thought you had clearly put into the organisation and for the warm atmosphere you created on arrival and around the whole 10km course. Well done and a very big thank you.” A group of novice runners supporting a local hospice charity