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Claudette Ward

Volunteering Role: Nordic Walking Leader

Why did you want to volunteer with Age Cymru?

I became a volunteer with Age Cymru after participating in the Nordic Walking at Maggies Singleton. I had been attending courses at Maggies and used to see the walkers getting together, going out and enjoying themselves.

I needed to do some form of exercise as I had completed 6 months of chemo. I suggested to my husband Michael, we try out the Nordic walking, he is extremely fit! And was encouraging me to start exercising, the Nordic walking looked like it was a good place to start. We thoroughly enjoyed it. Went along every Friday and saw there was a need for more instructors and Leaders. Michael decided to train as leader which led him to becoming an Instructor. I decided to become a Leader and really enjoy being a leader. That is how we became involved with Age Cymru.

What difference to your life has volunteering made to you?

The volunteering has made a big difference to my wellbeing. Being there for others is great. Wherever we go we meet people, talk about Nordic Walking, encouraging others to come along to our group. People stop us whilst out on our walks enquiring about Nordic Walking surprisingly enough quite a few people have come along and joined us. There are so many lonely people out there, reaching out to them is great.

What do you enjoy most about your volunteering experience?

I enjoy getting out in the open, sharing with new walkers what a difference Nordic walking is making in my life. The feeling of wellbeing. Assisting the new walker, encouraging them, seeing the joy on their faces is great, watching them do more each week. I enjoy making a difference.

What would you say to someone who is thinking of becoming involved with volunteering?

I would say ‘If you can make a difference in someone else’s life with whatever it is you enjoy doing, come along and become a volunteer. It will make you feel good knowing that you are making a difference. It will also give you a good feeling of wellbeing.

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