He has asked us (those of us who blog about agility) to blog about volunteering at trials.
I volunteer quite a bit - both as part of my day job (coaching, working after hours etc) and as part of being a global citizen (fundraising campaigns for many organizations, political advocacy, and of course my animal welfare work). When I started attending agility trials I started volunteering. Some trials I work a lot more than I run!
I LOVE volunteering. Course building has sort of become my thing- perhaps because I often run multiple dogs in multiple levels so finding a class I can volunteer in is tricky for the volunteer scheduler.
I LOVE hearing how the judges think as they walk the final tweak. I LOVE watching handlers and dogs run when I am ring crew or timer.I find the scoring process fascinating when I scribe (not often to date).
I like being fed, and I like the chance to win a new toy for the dogs. I like getting to know people.
For me volunteering is a way to give back to a sport I get an awful lot from. I don't suffer from ring nerves much but if I did I think it would be a good way to control them.
Should every one always volunteer? Nope - there are times that you need to focus on the job at hand. But most days, most trials I don't see any reason not to do SOMETHING. Even if the something is emptying the garbage at the end of the day; that saves some other volunteer some work.
My whole attitude towards volunteering is perhaps best summed up by my all time favourite quote. Helen Keller said " I am only one, but I am still one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do." Great eh?