Facilitating organisational effectiveness among volunteers in sport

Document type
Article
Author(s)
Holmes, Kirsten; King, Lindsay; Garret, Richard
Publisher
NCVO
Date of publication
1 January 2007
Series
Voluntary Action: the journal of the Institute for Volunteering Research. Vol. 8; Number 3
Subject(s)
Volunteering
Collection
Social welfare
Material type
Articles

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One of the UK government's policy positions in sport is to facilitate improvement in the voluntary sector's effectiveness and capacity, in order to help achieve governmental objectives for sport. However, attempting to change the voluntary sector in sport so that it serves as a more effective agent for government policy carries certain risks, as this sector is largely independent of government. This article explores the nature of volunteers in sport in order to judge if they are willing to change and willing to act as agents for government policy. It also examines the receptiveness of sports volunteers to an explicit, external initiative designed to facilitate improvement in the sector: Sport England's Volunteer Investment Programme, which operated from 1997 to 2005. The evidence used is from a national study of volunteering in sport, conducted for Sport England in 2002. The findings provide mixed evidence of the extent to which voluntary sport in England is capable of responding to the calls of government, and they suggest that if the voluntary sector is used in this way, a high wastage rate is to be expected. Different methods of stimulating the sector are considered.


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