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A Feeling of Self Worth

Terry Geddis from Ballycastle volunteers at Zanshin Shotokan NI Karate Club.

1. What does your volunteering involve?
I am the Volunteer Chief Instructor for the club, this involves me getting the students ready for their Grading and Competitions, and I also look after all the promotional work for the club.

2. When did you first begin volunteering?
20 Years ago.

3. What inspired you to get involved?
My family lived in L'Derry in the early seventies during the height of the troubles, we moved away to Coleraine for a better life however I had a lot of aggression problems so I got involved in Karate to calm my aggressive behaviour and to get fit, it worked on both counts so I decided if it works for me then it will work for other kids so I began to coach on a voluntary basis.

4. What attracted you to the role?
I had left my own club as I could progress no further, I knew I had the talent to teach so I completed my coaching exams, I realised there was a gap in the market for the youth and I knew Karate with its disciplines and structures would offer a good start in life for young people.

5. What skills or qualities are required for your volunteering role?
Patients, knowledge and the ability to cater for kids at all levels and stages of the sport.

6. Why do you volunteer?
Great satisfactions and results a feeling of self worth.

7. How often do you volunteer?
Every day.

8. What do you enjoy most about volunteering?
Travelling with the club and the fact that my volunteering is also a family activity, both my son and daughter compete in the sport and my wife looks after all the administration for the club.

9. Why would you encourage others to get involved?
I am always promoting volunteering, inviting people to the club for taster sessions, I tell them that it creates a discipline and structure to your life, it helps you keep fit and I believe that people involved in volunteering have more etiquette.

10. What has been the highlight of your volunteering?
My daughter and her friend won the Nationals in 2005/6 and then they got on the podium during the European Championships in 2008 only then I realised that if I had not put the hours into my voluntary coaching they would not have achieved these milestones in their chosen sport.

11. What advice would you give someone starting to volunteer?
Have patients and the time to commit, do not let money be your driver, the results will be your motivator, the smile on the kids faces the thank you from the parents will be your wealth and the fact that you are changing lives will make it all worth it.

12. Do you think the London 2012 Olympics will inspire people to get involved in sport and will it leave a legacy?
Yes I believe they will make a difference more people will get involved in sport however I think it will be short term due to lack of investment.