Thea Howells: Volunteer Leader to part-time Activity Coordinator

Posted by Laura Morgan at 10:09 on 15 September 2015

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Thea Howells describes how she, with Badminton Wales' help and support, went from being a volunteer badminton leader to gaining part-time employment as an Activity Coordinator with the Vale of Glamorgan.

Thea says,

"During my time in Cardiff and Vale College I was fortunate enough to complete my Sports Leaders UK award in badminton through Badminton Wales. The course gave me the knowledge and skills needed to lead a badminton session as we covered communication, planning and a badminton specific module.  I thoroughly enjoyed the course and really wanted to develop the skills and knowledge I’d gained. Angela Stevens, Badminton Development Officer for South Wales, delivered the course and offered me the opportunity of enhancing my leadership skills by volunteering in the local schools. It was during these sessions that I was able to put everything that was covered during the Leaders Award into practice. I especially found the planning module helpful as I found it a very important part of the session as you need to be prepared for every eventuality, especially when delivering in schools. I delivered sessions in many schools including Llantwit Major, Michaelston, Mary Immaculate and Glynderw.  

In return for my voluntary hours, Badminton Wales agreed to fund my UKCC Level 1 Award with LAPA funding they had received from Vale. This course developed my leading/coaching skills to another level. The course, although challenging at times, was well worth completing as I felt even more confident when I delivered badminton sessions.

Following on from the Level 1 course I subsequently received paid coaching hours. This enabled my confidence and experience to grow even further. I have not only delivered sessions within a school environment but also at festivals, primary and secondary schools tournaments and at disability events. Additionally, I featured in the Badminton Wales BISI film which has been produced to demonstrate how badminton can be played in a primary school environment. Completing the film with the children from Hywel Dda primary was a great experience. The children and I had so much fun making the short film and I think that comes across in the film.

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Gaining this wealth of experience through Badminton Wales has now led me to regular part-time hours with the Vale of Glamorgan in Llantwit Comprehensive School and Ysgol Bro Morgannwg. I am gaining experience and confidence with every session that I deliver and am extremely grateful to Badminton Wales for all their help and support."

Ben Williams Active Young People Co-ordinator from the Vale of Glamorgan said, 

“It was essential to get somebody in the school as quickly as possible to continue the 5 x 60 provision. As Thea had the relevant qualifications and experience gained through Badminton Wales and our LAPA funding, she was able to step straight into the role helping us maintain continuity of the sessions for the pupils.”

Eddie O'Neill commented,

“Thea is a star and embodies everything that is great in a young volunteer. Her work has been of enormous value in helping us develop badminton in our schools."

Badminton Wales is always BISI

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