Games volunteer? You can help Briony with her research!
8 December 2015
Briony is a PhD student from the School of Arts, Social Science and Management at Queen Margaret University. She is exploring 'social legacy' which includes assessing the well being and happiness of volunteers.
As some of you reading this may know, I am two thirds of the way through my PhD. As part of my thesis I am investigating the potential social legacy for major event volunteers, queue Glasgow 2014 XX Commonwealth Games and the number of wonderful Games volunteers!
Having the Games in Scotland last year gave me the perfect opportunity to indulge in my ideal research areas of major events, regeneration, volunteering and social impacts.
This combination has lead me to the realm of social legacy, and what legacy the Games can have for the volunteers. Despite growth in recognition of intangible benefits of major events, there remains a gap in the intangible legacy of volunteer programmes.
Although large sporting events are short in duration, they have the potential to have a meaningful and lasting impact beyond the last day of competition.
Here lies my interest in what the volunteers think.
-What impact does volunteering at a major event have on your life?
-What do you do know that you didn’t before?
-Has it changed your perspective on anything in your life?
The answer might well be nothing or no change to the above questions; however, that is also a finding and of interest to me.
Obviously, my PhD thesis has its limits (although some days I feel like I am changing the world!), I will make a meaningful contribution to new knowledge within this field. I say that with conviction because of all the wonderful Games volunteers that have already completed my survey – I am infinitely grateful. Without your input my research would not be possible, and it is for that reason that I need more!
So far, my data has led me in the direction to question and provide insights into sustained volunteering after the event, increased volunteering, length of volunteering vs. impact, social benefits (meeting new friends, having new experiences), and well-being improvements. Although preliminary, these findings are very exciting for me! But, like I said, I am politely pleading for more responses.
So do you know someone who volunteered? Family, friends, colleague? Please spare a couple of minutes to take part or share my survey link. Social Impact from Volunteering Survey