Clubs and volunteering

Volunteers are vital to many sports – but their input needs to be valued and cherished.

30 June 2017

Volunteers are a hugely important resource to sport in England. According to the latest Active People survey, over 5.5 million people volunteer regularly in sport.
However, Sport England has found evidence that recruiting and retaining volunteers is increasingly difficult in many sports. 

Research from 2002 (below) found that voluntary sports clubs needed more support from central and local government.

It made several recommendations, including:

  • adapting the way that ‘professionalisation’ is promoted, to reflect the different cultures in clubs
  • promoting the advantages of volunteer coordinators
  • recognising that paying staff for roles that used to be voluntary risks reducing the morale of volunteers
  • ensuring that volunteers are not overloaded by the need to meet the latest requirements from government or sporting authorities

Club membership

Qualitative research carried out in 2008 delved deeper into understanding the appeal of organised sport – what are the benefits and barriers to joining a club and what messages would encourage different people to join?

Find out more by downloading the documents below.