As with all amateur sporting organisations Illawarra Blue Stars Athletic Club relies very much on the help and expertise of volunteers.
There are many areas of the club where volunteers can assist including:
- taking a position on the management committee
- assisting with club functions or fund raising activities
- helping on club competition days
Club competition days in particular rely very much on volunteers to take out and put away equipment and to assist with the running of all the events. People who assist with officiating are given help and guidance by members who are Athletics Australia accredited technical officials.
Athletics Australia Qualified Technical Officials
The following is an alphabetical listing of Illawarra Blue Stars Athletic Club members who are current Athletics Australia accredited technical officials:
- Neville Fenn
- Ann Grimm
- John Munro
- Ian Smith
- Jodie Sundstrom
- Sue Sundstrom
The following members have also passed officiating exams in recent years under the previous ANSW system:
- Mary Thomas
Becoming a Qualified Athletic Official
As a result of the joint venture agreement between Athletics Australia and Little Athletics Australia, the Australian Athletics Official Education Committee was formed.
The outcome was that AA and LAA has implemented a five-level system, creating a transparent pathway for officials from club/school level through to the international level. The system is common across all athletics organisations and for the entry levels involves doing simple online tests at home in your own time. The entry levels are for individual events e.g. track, long jump, discus, etc.
Levels 1 (basic entry level) and 2 are now up and running.
Information on gaining accreditation can be found on the Athletics NSW website at http://www.nswathletics.org.au/Officials. There is a section on “Officials Education” that provides a link to the Athletics Australia website that explains all about the new system. Alternatively you can go directly to the AA website at http://www.athletics.com.au/Officials/Education.
Candidates will need to be familiar with the relevant sections of the IAAF Competition Rules Handbook (currently 2016-2017).
This can be downloaded from: http://www.nswathletics.org.au/Portals/18/Officials/IAAF%20Competition%20Rules%202016-2017.pdf. Printed copies can generally be purchased from Athletics Australia or Athletics NSW.
IBS encourages all members to consider at least gaining accreditation in their areas of interest.
Janet Munro 1.7.45 - 9.3.17
The late Janet Munro provides an example of where volunteering can lead.
Janet joined IBS in 1995 with the aim of getting involved as a master’s athlete, not having been involved with athletics since her school days. However, as is the case with so many people who join the club, she was soon helping out with officiating on Sunday afternoons.
From this basic beginning she became a very capable and highly respected technical official for Athletics NSW and Athletics Australia. She officiated at both state and national events and championships on a regular basis, primarily on field events in summer and cross country in winter.
She also officiated at Oceania Championships and would have certainly been selected for the 2018 Commonwealth Games had she not passed away unexpectedly. (Four other officials from IBS were also chosen for this event out of a total of 43 selected from NSW).
Janet was named NSW Official of the Year for 2016-17, having been a finalist twice before. However, what meant just as much to her was seeing the progress ofother officials who she had mentored, advised or encouraged and the positive feedback she received from athletes, coaches and parents of junior athletes.
The point of this brief outline is to show the opportunities that can open up from volunteering. Of course, not everyone wants to or has the time to get as involved as Janet did. However, when it comes to IBS club meets, volunteers can rest assured that the time that they give is appreciated just as much as that provided by officials of Janet’s experience.