Mike, Inclusive Swim Club Volunteer
Why did you decide to volunteer?
After taking part in one of Greenhouse’s fundraising events, I learned more about the great work it does helping disadvantaged communities, mentoring young people and developing their skills. I wanted to give something back to society and, after hearing that the swimming club had a shortage of male volunteers, I was more than happy to come along for a couple of hours a week to help out.
What have you found to be particularly challenging?
Initially, getting to know all of the individual characters in the lessons and understanding fully how best to approach coaching each of them was quite challenging. Now that I’ve built relationships with them and I’m more familiar with their particular needs, I can try to engage them properly and make sure they get the most out of the lessons.
What has been especially rewarding?
It’s been brilliant to watch some of the young people make fantastic progress from being very nervous in the water to swimming full widths and diving.
What do you enjoy about volunteering with the swimmers?
I think the most enjoyable part is seeing that they’re having fun in the lessons; letting off steam whist developing swimming skills and gaining confidence. It’s great to see first-hand the hugely positive impact Greenhouse has on their lives.
What have you gained from volunteering with Greenhouse?
I’ve met some great people, from Greenhouse staff to the parents of the swimmers. The young people’s energy is really contagious too. I also have to confess that Annette and Nik’s great coaching has improved my front crawl.