Can you help? Would you like to join the core team at the Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park junior parkrun? We’re look for some more run directors to join Arif, Thomas and Richard (and core team member Claire) to help organise and manage the events each week.
What does it involve? Each parkrun team takes a slightly different approach to roles and responsibilities. Some events split roles between various people, at Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park we find it easier for the Run Director (RD) to lead on a range of roles across the week. We take it in turns to be RD, so at the moment that means we’re each organising the event once every three weeks, but if we get more RDs then that will drop to once a month or less.
Before the event. If it’s your turn to be RD then you’ll take over from the previous RD on the Sunday afternoon, after everything has been wrapped up for that day’s event. That week you’ll be responsible in advance of the next event for organising the volunteer roster, writing Facebook posts to ask for volunteers (as well as posts to promote that week’s event), sending out the instructions to volunteers, assigning roles for the day and ensuring everything is ready for the next event.
During the event. On the day itself you’ll be responsible for the event - though generally there will be one of the other RDs there volunteering in a different role and helping out the RD in charge that day. You’ll check the course (and the weather) to see if there are any problems, you’ll make sure the cones and any other equipment is set out, you’ll welcome the volunteers and brief them on their roles, you’ll brief first timers taking part as well as welcoming everyone to the event. You’ll start the event, deal with any problems and make sure all the volunteers are happy.
After the event. Once it's over you’ll make sure everything is packed away and that the barcode scanners and timekeepers have uploaded everything to the parkrun system. The parkrun results system (WebFMS) is easy to use and virtually foolproof, it processes all the results with you ironing out any problems it highlights. You’ll then provide Facebook updates after the event as well as dealing with any issues before handing over to the next RD. That’s it! It may sound onerous and time consuming but it isn’t - it’s probably at most 2 hours of your time during the week with all the core team helping each other as needed. What we haven’t mentioned is that it’s so fun and rewarding being a run director, helping everyone whether walkers, runners or volunteers have a great start to their Sundays.
Are you interested? If you’re interested what happens next? You’re bound to have questions so just ask - email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or have a chat with one of us at a future event. If you’d like we can set up a video chat with you to talk through what’s involved. After that it’s a case of submitting your details to parkrun, having an up to date DBS check, reading the background parkrun documents and then shadowing an RD at a future event. We won’t drop you in at the deep end so would support you at every stage. It’s worth remembering that none of the the RDs at SOLP had been RDs before, so we’re still learning.
Don’t panic! If you’re reading this and thinking this is an urgent appeal for help, it isn’t. We can keep organising the events with three run directors, but it would be nice to have a bigger pool of people in the core team to draw from.
We look forward to hearing from you - Arif, Thomas, Richard and Claire