Volunteering Champions

Meet the Team

The Glasgow 2018 Team is supported by a group of fantastic Volunteering Champions who help promote the many benefits of volunteering, talk about why volunteering is important to them and to encourage more people to apply to be a Glasgow 2018 Volunteer.

Meet the Glasgow 2018 Volunteering Champions - Izzy, Jim and Aaron

Izzy: I fell into volunteering and have never fallen back out of love with it.

Aaron: Volunteering is a brilliant way to shape yourself as a person.

Jim: There’s more to volunteering than you imagine – it’s amazing!

Izzy: Get you out the house, get you out of a rut, get you new friends, get you new places, get you places you might never have thought of going and more importantly, building up your social network.

Aaron: People should definitely get involved, because you develop new skills that you never thought you could ever have and it’s a great way to help out and contribute to your community. 

Jim: The Glasgow public is amazing! They, you know, they come up and ask you some wonderful questions. How can you do it? Where are you going? Can you come back next year? You know, they don’t know, but they just like to be involved and be about the city of Glasgow. They make you feel good, and they make you feel proud - that you are a Glaswegian.
 

Read their stories. 

Florence on Tradeston Bridge
Florence, Volunteering Champion

Florence

From: Bridgeton

Favourite thing about Glasgow:  The fact that people make Glasgow 

Florence’s journey into volunteering began when a friend reached out to her during a particularly difficult period in her life. It was this experience and the selfless actions of her friend that gave Florence the determination to help and empower people who found themselves in similar situations.

There’s no greater example of this than when Florence spotted a lone mum in Glasgow a few years ago. Sensing that the woman was feeling isolated, Florence rallied other women around her and helped get her confidence back. Spurred on by her experience she organised a running group for mums that has seen women with little or no running experience at all compete in official events. In fact, every single person in Florence’s group has either run a 10k, a half-marathon or even a full marathon in some cases.

Her efforts have not gone unnoticed. In 2016 Florence was awarded the Best Volunteer of the Year at the Community Giants Award Event for her selfless actions and extraordinary work within the volunteering sector.

“It was a massive surprise and I certainly wasn’t expecting it!” said Florence. “Volunteering is the best way for me to reach people and provide support for my community. People relate more to those who understand personally what their struggles are and I feel I’m able to use my own experiences to help them.”

Florence is looking forward to all aspects of the Glasgow 2018 European Championships and is particularly eager to turn people’s interests in individual sports into a passion for their city and the event as a whole.

Izzy at the Riverside Museum
Izzy at the Riverside Museum

Izzy

From: Parkhead

Favourite thing about Glasgow:  The banter, the patter and the caring nature we seem to possess. We are an open armed, big hearted city and nothing beats a Glasgow welcome!

Izzy’s story is proof that volunteering can take you to some new and unexpected places.

Brought up in the East End of Glasgow, Izzy took her first steps into volunteering in 2012 when she became a Gamesmaker at Hampden Park for the London 2012 Olympic football matches. It was an ‘exhilarating and humbling’ experience that proved to be the start of a fascinating journey for the proud Glaswegian.

When the Commonwealth Games came to Glasgow in the summer of 2014 Izzy was among the first people to offer a hand. She was a frontrunner for the Games and was even invited down to Buckingham Palace for the launch of the Queen’s Baton Relay, where she was interviewed on national TV and Radio.

It was through her experience with Glasgow 2014 that Izzy then got invited to Azerbaijan to volunteer at the 2015 European Games in Baku, something she retains great memories of. “I had such a brilliant time with wonderful people in a beautiful city,” said Izzy. “That's the joy of volunteering - networking and the opening of doors to exciting new opportunities. Who knows what's around the corner.”

Izzy also regularly volunteers with the Scottish Rugby team and assisted at the Homeless World Cup in Glasgow in 2016. She’s looking forward to all Glasgow 2018 events but is especially excited for the Gymnastics at The SSE Hydro. “It’s a beautiful sport to watch and the spectators get so involved you can’t help but get caught up in the moment!”

Aaron Cloisters
Aaron, Volunteering Champion

Aaron

From: Dalmarnock

Favourite thing about Glasgow: The diversity! Glasgow is a melting pot of different talents, backgrounds and culture.

Aaron started volunteering as an assistant at a local charity shop in order to boost his CV and gain work experience.

He has since gone on to volunteer at numerous organisations around Glasgow including the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, Musical Workshop and St Andrew’s First Aid.

One of Aaron’s most enjoyable experiences was at FARE – a voluntary organisation in Easterhouse that helps disadvantaged children and families. Putting his volunteer experience into action he helped to engage the local community and create activities and events for young people in the area.

Two of Aaron’s big passions are science and music, and he’s been able to mix both of these with his love of volunteering. As a STEM ambassador at ScienceConnects he helps to stage science demonstrations at the Glasgow Science Festival and he won a Platinum Youth Achievement Award for Volunteering with YouthScotland’s The Big Music Project in 2015.

And if that’s not enough, Aaron juggles all these volunteering roles with a biology degree at the University of Glasgow. He said: “I love the student life in Glasgow. Due to the close proximity between the University of Glasgow, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow Caledonian University and the City of Glasgow College, the city is abuzz with life and you will never run out of interesting people to talk to.”

In his latest role as a Volunteer Champion at Glasgow 2018 Aaron is looking forward to sampling the hype leading up to the Championships. “When people become excited about a big event in Glasgow it makes you feel proud of your home.”

Jim at the Cloisters
Jim, Volunteering Champion

Jim

From: Blantyre

Favourite thing about Glasgow:  I’m a weegie so I’m a bit bias - but it has to be the people.

Not many people can lay claim to having given a lift to the world’s fastest man. But that’s just what Jim Campbell did when he drove a certain Mr Usain Bolt to the Athlete’s Village at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

It’s just one of several fascinating experiences Jim has gained from being a volunteer.

After watching the London 2012 Olympic Games Jim was inspired to take up volunteering and he quickly put his name forward to help at Glasgow 2014. Following on from his experiences there he also volunteered at the 2015 World Gymnastic Championships at The SSE Hydro, where he used his experience as a builder to help with the equipment and logistics team. Jim was even able to pass on his skills to younger volunteers and gained a first-hand insight into the preparations that goes into major sporting events.

One of Jim’s best experiences was when he volunteered at the Homeless World Cup in George Square. He recalls: “I met people from far and wide and they all said the same thing; Scottish people are very nice. And that was despite the rain.”

Now ‘Jim the Builder’ is looking ahead to Glasgow 2018 where he’s hoping to pass on his skills once again to anyone who needs it. “I just like being involved and helping people. Volunteering is a great way to learn new things and I love listening to the professionals,” said Jim.

“You’ll always find me at the front and I’m there until the very end. Even when it rains!”