Rugby Football League celebrates Hull Wyke during Volunteer Week

This Volunteers Week, the Rugby Football League is celebrating the outstanding work of Hull Wyke RL, which continues to put the local community and volunteers at the heart of all its activities.

Founded in 1960, the club has recently taken initiatives that have positively impacted its volunteers, including developing new recruitment practices, hosting a volunteer celebration and conducting concussion awareness sessions.

Samantha Buttle joined Hull Wyke as Club Liaison and Welfare Officer in 2023 and, following an RFL Safeguarding Conference, introduced a new recruitment process to improve the induction of volunteers.

“When I started, we had experienced a lot of growth as a club, so we needed a more formal process for onboarding new volunteers,” explained Samantha. “At the RFL Safeguarding conference, there was a discussion about safer recruitment processes and I thought we should introduce these. So I used that information and worked with Kerry Taylor to develop a new way of onboarding volunteers.”

With this new system, Samantha and Kerry have developed a new, simple yet effective recruitment process that starts with a suitable application, role descriptions and interview questions, and continues through to acceptance letters and onboarding.

“New volunteers for 2024 have now been introduced as part of our more secure recruitment process and the committee feels they have a better idea of ​​who they are recruiting and that volunteers have a better idea of ​​what is expected in their roles.

“Overall, more checks have been carried out and the safety of all children in our club is our top priority.”

Hull Wyke is now home to 120 volunteers supporting Rugby League for 13 different age groups as well as being a recognised RFL Community Wellbeing Hub. In January they held a volunteers evening to thank all the dedicated people who contribute to the successful running of the club.

“All clubs are run by volunteers, without whom the club would not exist, let alone survive. So our aim was to give something back to them and say 'thank you' for everything they do.

“Every team and parent had the opportunity to say thank you at the event. It was truly an honor to be able to read words of thanks and express the gratitude of so many people.”

Marc Lovering, Development Director of the RFL, says:

“Volunteers are the bedrock of Community Rugby League and I think the work Hull Wyke has done to recruit, train and develop its volunteers should serve as a blueprint for the future of the clubs.

“Their management have taken the time to listen to and learn more about their volunteers and now have a thriving network they can rely on to keep Hull Wyke at the heart of the community.

“Hull Wyke's commitment to keeping parents and team managers up to date with the latest concussion symptoms and protocols is also second to none. This is a great example of a club developing volunteers who understand the new concussion guidelines and being committed to the safety of its players.”

Volunteering Week celebrates the amazing contributions volunteers make to communities across the UK.

Celebrations begin on the first Monday in June each year and provide an opportunity to recognise, celebrate and thank the UK's incredible volunteers for their contribution to our local communities, the voluntary sector and society as a whole.