Gymnastics WA relies on passionate and dedicated volunteers to ensure our events are delivered successfully for athletes, coaches, judges, parents and spectators. Whether it be lending a hand every now and then whilst watching your child compete, or taking on a more frequent role, we have something available for everyone. Helen Jones is a prime example of where volunteering with Gymnastics WA can take you, travelling to Melbourne each year with the Trampoline Gymnastics State Team.
We caught up with Helen to ask her a few questions about what got her into volunteering with Gymnastics WA many years ago and why she continues to volunteer year in and year out. Check out our conversation below.
1) How long have you been a volunteer with Gymnastics WA and what made you first get involved?
I have been involved with Gymnastics WA for six years. This will be my seventh year attending Australian Championships. I got involved because Gymnastics WA were having trouble finding enough Team Managers and I thought my teaching experience would be helpful in the role. I have been Assistant Head of Delegation, assisted as a Manager and for the past five years Head of Delegation. Being a volunteer on the State Team was also a way I could attend Nationals and watch my daughter complete.
2) Your daughter Sarah has been doing Trampoline Gymnastics since the age of 9. What got her started in the sport?
Sarah started in Women’s Artistic Gymnastics but decided it wasn’t for her. She loved bouncing on our backyard trampoline and when she met Philippa Preuss, who was the Trampoline Coach for Spirit Gym Sports, they got on immediately. Phillipa was the person who inspired Sarah into the sport.
3) What are some of the other volunteer roles you have done for Gymnastics WA?
My first role was assisting as a Floor Manager for competitions. I have also done announcing and scoring.
4) What do you get out of volunteering with Gymnastics WA? Are there any new skills you have learnt?
I love volunteering, especially having the opportunity to watch athletes achieve their best and for them to have the opportunity to meet other athletes from their own state or from other states. I have learnt to be more patient as competitions don’t always run to schedule and have learnt a lot about other gymsports such as Acrobatics and Rhythmic.
5) You have been travelling to Australian Championships in Melbourne with the State Team since 2013. What do you enjoy most about being a Head of Delegation?
I love to organise things so I enjoy the process of preparing for the competition/travel. It is also great to meet the various people involved from different states including Athletes, Managers and Coaches.
6) What is one of your favourite memories you have had whilst undertaking a volunteer role for Gymnastics WA?
Seeing the International Women’s Trampoline team achieve podium when competing against the other states at Nationals.
7) Do you volunteer for any other organisations?
I used to be the Vice President of a swimming club, however when my children decided they did not want to follow my passion of swimming, I began to volunteer with gymnastics instead.
8) What do you like to get up to when you aren’t at work or volunteering for Gymnastics WA?
I love working in the garden. I grow frangipanis and revive orchids.
Want to know more about volunteering with Gymnastics WA? Read through our Volunteer Roles & Responsibilities document or register for the next Floor Manager & Volunteer Workshop here. For further information or to express interest, contact Lucy Young on (08) 9228 9399 or firstname.lastname@example.org
We would like to thank Helen for all her help over the years and look forward to many more years working with her. Be sure to say hello if you see her around in future!