BLOG: Tom's YCF Journey with volunteers
Volunteers play a fundamental role within the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation (YCF)!
Volunteer roles include being a part of our award-winning Yorkies Welcome Team, students partaking in placements or volunteers offering support and help with the various cricket events and programmes we run directly in the community.
Our volunteer’s selflessness, dedication and enthusiasm are the reason YCF has grown into the great charitable foundation it has become and helping improve thousands of lives across Yorkshire.
Introducing Tom Mason, YCF’S Volunteer Manager, who has the onus of overseeing the volunteer programme. He has been in his current role since May helping to increase the number of volunteers, opportunities and ensuring the day-to-day operations run smoothly.
Despite lots of weight and responsibility on his shoulders, Tom has found his time at YCF to be rewarding and thoroughly enjoyable.
Tom spoke about his journey with YCF…
I started my role as Volunteer Manager at YFC in May of this year. I have worked with a lot of organisations in the past that rely on volunteers or are volunteer led, for example I recently worked within mental health helping people with dementia. Consequently, I have first-hand knowledge of the amazing work volunteers do, dedicating their time and resources into helping others.
Finding out about the work the volunteers, particularly the Yorkies, partake in at YCF was a huge inspiration for me to join and being the spearhead of the Yorkies programme is a true honour and privilege for me.
My admiration for the Foundation regarding their volunteering scheme alongside my love for cricket thus made me keen to be involved. YCF have not always had someone in the role of volunteer manager so taking this tenure was a great opportunity for me to help grow and improve the volunteer programme in ways that haven’t been possible before.
Having work I enjoy has helped me feel confident and feel a lot better personally – Tom
Pictured, Tom (in white), in action on matchday
My main responsibility is to manage the Yorkies and administrate that side of things, and making sure enough preparation is done for a matchday by ensuring there are enough people there on the day.
All of the preparation is worth it when seeing the magnificent work the Yorkies do on matchdays – I am proud to play a part in this.
I look forward to coming into work, I love talking and meeting with new people and as each day goes by, I am enjoying the role more and more.
Through being a volunteer manager and being involved with the Yorkies I have built strong relationships with our volunteers. This has given me a great insight into the diligence our volunteers put into their work and the passion they have for the club and foundation.
My most rewarding moment was getting through my first test match as volunteer manager. On the first day 60% of people who said they were available dropped out, due to various reasons including illness and transport difficulties as there was a train strike, leaving us short of volunteers. By day two, due to lots of hard work from myself and the Yorkies, this issue was resolved. Taking part and getting through a show piece event like a test match, especially with the obstacles mentioned, has been my biggest achievement to date.
For anyone unsure about volunteering at YCF, all I will say is come and give it a try. Our opportunities are not just limited to Yorkies. Once you find something you like doing, you will want to continue with it – you never regret spending time doing something worthwhile.
I am more and more confident in this role by the day and I am excited as to what the future holds. Looking ahead, I want to expand the number of volunteers as well as improve the training for the Yorkies so they are better equipped for the role and can take what they have learnt to other places. As I know the club and foundation better, I will be able to improve and get a lot more out of it. The future is bright!