Why did you step up?
There was a shortage of coaches in the community, so I decided to go for it.
Were you prepared? Was it intimidating?
A bit! I didn’t know anything about the game, and still don’t (laughs). I did a lot of reading. Nothing was available in the (southeast) zone – so had to look all over. Did a lot of reading and internet research, watching videos. Patti’s soccer knowledge helped. I remember coaching U8’s was a like herding cats! A lot harder than it appeared from the sideline, but fun. I found I got right into it. Tom’s love for soccer was infectious and I had a really good time.
What do you think the strengths of the BD soccer program are?
We worked with the zone and have helped pull together a strong program. There is lots of information available to coaches now, practice plans are laid out, all children are receiving standardized guidance appropriate to their age level. It is so much easier now to coach. It’s straightforward now, even if you do not have much experience with the game. The real strength of the program is in our coaches. We have great coaches that are well-trained and keep coming back. Parents love it, and we have a steady request from families outside the community that want to play for Bonnie Doon. Our program has a really good reputation.
What have been the rewards in volunteering so much time?
Meeting people and getting to know the children. There are so many wonderful kids in this community. They’ll come up and say hello to me, but I don’t know who they are! I know every kid’s name in the community on paper, but not all their faces. I’ve loved watching the kids grow and develop their games, it has been amazing.
Advice to someone thinking of joining the soccer program
Don’t do it!! (laughs) just kidding. I really believe we’re the best community to live in, very family oriented and so many great people in our neighbourhood. If you have an opportunity to participate, take it! Just step up and volunteer, it’s worth it. Soccer is a great way to meet people, hanging out on the sidelines or pulling together the program. It doesn’t get much better than this.