Kathy Purkis - Volunteer Ride Leader
Full name, area you live in and name of group or activity you support
Kathy Purkis, Southampton CTC
What made you decide to volunteer your skills with Cycling UK?
- We had easy rides and hard rides and I thought we needed something in between
- I used to work in IT and I felt we needed a better web page where it is easier to find what is going on, is more flexible than a printed 3 monthly program and is cheaper (as we are not paying for the printing!)
How much time are you able to commit?
This varies a lot. Sometimes I can spare more time (particularly in the winter when there is less time for cycling) sometimes I can’t spare any, I work almost full-time.
What roles do you perform as a volunteer?
Our Friday half-day rides, Sunday moderate rides, setting up the web page, the Facebook page and the email distribution forum. Also a couple of social events.
What are the greatest challenges you have encountered?
Time to produce the website.
Not knowing the local roads enough when leading rides! I plan them online and use a Garmin to help but also have the map in front on my bar bag.
Describe a typical day in your volunteer role.
There isn’t a typical day. I spent a lot of time on the web page last winter after work in the evenings. I plan routes online and take my husband out with me to recce unknown areas for a future ride.
Of all the tasks you have helped with, what are you most proud of?
The web page as I think it has increased participation.
What did you get out of the experience?
I had never produced a web page before but I was pleased that I could.
Has it enhanced your passion for cycling and have you had the chance to get out more on your bike?
Also going on more bike rides has helped improve my fitness. I am also more familiar with the local area (for ½ day rides to coffee).
What would you say to someone considering volunteering with Cycling UK?
Every little helps. Just do a little bit to help your club. Maybe lead an easy short ride, help at a stand for publicity or organise a social event, help someone lead a ride by being a back marker.