27th September 2006 -
The Martin Johnson Rugby Camps programme is a joint initiative between Martin Johnson and the Rugby Football Union that provides boys and girls of a variety of ages and skills the chance to develop their games under the instruction of the country's top RFU qualified coaches.
This year's camps (8 in total) have engaged 4 young volunteers from the Student Volunteer Programme at the University of Southampton to assist with the logistics of each camp. Nicola Vaughan, Anthony Vaughan, Josh Fletcher and Pete Roberts have been working alongside the Camp Managers (from SFX, Martin Johnson's agents) assisting with all logistics enabling all the camps to run extremely smoothly, and also having the opportunity to get involved with some of the coaching.
"The 2006 programme had huge emphasis on the role of the volunteer team supporting each of the team managers. The roles designated to each volunteer were central to the efficiency and co-ordination of each of the camps. The attitude and dedication of each of the volunteers was extremely important to the running of the camps and the management team could not have asked for any more from any of the volunteers in this respect. More often than not that they went well and beyond the call of duty in ensuring that the programme was run at an exceptional standard. The two teams worked very well together in ensuring that the reputation of the programme was not only maintained but enhanced after this year's efforts. All volunteers were a pleasure to work with and they were a credit to the RFU" (Peter Janes & Beccy Goodwin, Martin Johnson Rugby Camps)
Student Nicola Vaughan describes her experience, "It was a fantastic opportunity to work along side one of the great legends of the rugby world, along with some amazing professionals- coaches, SFX alike. As volunteers we played an important role ensuring the day to day running of the camps went well, it gave us a lot of experience in event management, teamwork, communication and adaptability. We were also able to get involved with some of the coaching that was being delivered, which was great to take with us to our next coaching qualification. I can safely say on behalf of all the volunteers involved that we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, benefiting in more ways than one. It was great to see grass roots rugby at its best with children of varying abilities encouraged to pursue their rugby careers."
Gavin Williams, Rugby Development Officer for Hampshire also commented that, "They have been a fantastic addition to the team and have helped to make sure each camp has run smoothly. As a way of saying thank you and to reward their efforts we have agreed to fund their next steps on either the coaching or refereeing ladder"
Lizzie Phillips, Community Sports Volunteer Development Officer at University Of Southampton said, "The opportunity which the Martin Johnson Summer Camps has provided our students has been invaluable. Our volunteers at the University give up so much free time and put in so much energy into volunteering in the community, this provided them with an enjoyable Summer volunteering opportunity and rewarded their hard work"