Commonwealth Games and Olympic hero Louis Smith goes back to Huntingdon gym – as a volunteer helper
Posted: August 16, 2014|
VOLUNTEER: Louis Smith goes back to his gym at Huntingdon as part of a volunteer scheme
Louis helped put young athletes through their paces on the equipment he used to hone his medal-winning skills.
He was taking part in the Join in Summer Relay event designed to encourage more people to get involved in local sports clubs by volunteering.
Louis was one of a number of top name athletes taking part in the project, launched by the London 2012 legacy charity Join In.
The star of the new gymnastics-based TV show Tumble and Strictly winner took part as a way of thanking the volunteers who helped him in the early stages of his career.
Double Commonwealth gold medallist David Moorcroft, director of sport at Join In, joined Louis at the Huntingdon gym.
He said: “Huntingdon is a club that produces world class gymnasts and as a result many incredible volunteers has also given thousands of young people the opportunity to discover the joys of gymnastics.
“Huntingdon’s ethos to provide accessible and inclusive sport aligns perfectly with Join In’s and we are delighted to be working with them as part of the Join in Summer Relay.”
There was a special award for long-serving club volunteer Steve Davison.
All top athletes start off at grass roots level and research by Join In has shown that seven out of 10 clubs need more volunteers.
The Join In Summer Relay is designed to give sporting stars the chance to go back to the heart of the community with a spell as a volunteer.
Sue Besant, from Huntingdon Gymnastics Club, said: “It went very well. It was great fun, there were 60 plus children here for the summer camp.
“We do have a lot of volunteers and we rely on them an awful lot in the evenings and weekends.”
She said: “A lot of them start by coming with their children, offering to help and then getting qualified.”
Sue said there was always a demand for volunteers prepared to help out.
Information about volunteering opportunities is available from joinuk.org.