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Why do you feel that people are hesitant in volunteering with the local grassroots sports clubs and what do you feel can be done to motivate them to volunteer?

The Barriers that Basing stoke Sports Clubs face due to the Lack of Volunteers.

Sport Management

Potential Aim and Objectives

The purpose of this study is to understand how important and valuable volunteers are to sports clubs, whilst investigating the challenges and barriers that local grassroots sports club in Basing stoke face due to the lack of volunteers.


  1. To identify the challenges that the local grassroots sports clubs in Basing stoke face from the lack of volunteers.
  1. To understand how important and valuable volunteers are to the local grassroots sports clubs.
  1. To explore how the shortage of volunteers is restricting sports clubs in the local area.
  1. Use my past years’ experience to help give me a deeper understanding into the efforts clubs are facing.
  1. Pinpoint strategies for local clubs to gain new volunteers.

Potential Methodology;

The research will be collected using primary data because it will be specific to the topic under study, and is set as a case study as it can be a valuable tool for answering complex, real-world questions (Tetnowski 2015). The study will also use qualitative and deductive data, from the use of questionnaires to fully understand the opinions of grassroots sports club’s representatives. The deductive data will be used to test the hypothesis from working with Basing stoke sports council and Basing stoke voluntary action.

The research will be conducted by using a Case study, to fully understand The Barriers that Basing stoke Sports Clubs face due to the Lack of Volunteers. The aim of a case study is to work with the collected qualitative data, to investigate a certain situation within a group. Tetnowski (2015) identifies that a case study begins with a general inquiry based upon an observed issue. The research design was chosen because it has the ability to observe real life problems, Zainal (2007) shows that case study methods, allow research to go beyond the quantitative statistical results and understand views through a person’s and organizations perspective.

The research undertaken will use a qualitative approach, so will look at online questionnaires along with previous experiences and encounters as a way to collect vital data. Jones (2015) explains that questionnaires tend to provide highly structured data that is easily comparable between subject groups. This will be ideal to compare all findings from local sports clubs. The questionnaires will begin with structured questions exploring the participants background, and how they are connected with the club. The questions will then develop to understand situations and feelings of the individual. Data will also be examined from previous meetings with clubs, and from attending training sessions and volunteering workshops.

The participants that will be chosen for this research are those who are registered on Basingstoke voluntary actions database, contact information has been collected from having access to this. All 249 will be contacted and all are the head representative of their respected club. To combat any ethical issues, consent forms will be given to all participants along with the questionnaires outlining what the research study is about and what I want to achieve. The consent forms will ask for permission from the participants to have their answers used within this study. Furthermore, the forms will inform participants that they may withdraw any information or themselves from the research at any point.

Potential Research questions

  • How are volunteers important to your club and what do they bring?
  • Does the shortage of volunteers affect the membership and waiting list of your club?
  • Does the shortage of volunteers affect your sports club’s activities in any way?
  • Why do you feel that people are hesitant in volunteering with the local grassroots sports clubs and what do you feel can be done to motivate them to volunteer?
  • With the help of more volunteers would your club be able to cooperate with local schools and the community?
  • Does your club get sufficient support from your sport’s national governing body with regards to volunteering?
  • Will more volunteers increase the rate of participation within your club?

The data will be analyzed using thematic analysis, this will examine patterns and highlight key themes found from participant responses. The research will also compare findings with past sources and strategies.

Background of the Study;

Every year Basing stoke and Deane Borough Council send a sports survey to all clubs within the town to help support clubs more effectively. One of the questions that was asked this year was “is your club in need of more volunteers” 70.2% responded yes. I hope this research will show the local council and sporting organizations how valuable volunteers really are to clubs, and why the lack and need of more volunteers are preventing clubs to improve and grow. In addition to this I hope the information found from the study will be used to motivate people to volunteer within sports clubs.

Volunteering to the local grassroots sports clubs is usually an important aspect because it “offers a unique potential to contribute the social development through corporate social responsibility” (Chadwick et al. 2015). It influences sports participation, sports support, policy implementation and acknowledgment of sports socially and culturally. The lack of volunteers in the local sports clubs generally impacts the sports activities, management, support, policies and how people perceive it in social and cultural environments.

Volunteers have always played a vital part in the sports and physical activity sector. Without them, most community sport and physical activity simply wouldn’t happen (Sport England 2016). According to Sport England, there are two million adults who give up at least one hour a week to help out at their local club or at events. It is no exaggeration to say that without them grassroots sport in this country would wither and die (BBC Sport 2012).

There are many sources and strategies from the likes of Sport England that show us what the barriers are to being a volunteer and how to overcome them but little to none show what the barriers are from the lack of volunteers, and how volunteering can really help and benefit sports clubs.


BBC, 2012. How unpaid volunteers make the sports world go round [online]. Available from: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/20567861 [Accessed 29 August 2018].

Chadwick, S. and Chanavat, N. and Desbordes, M., 2015. Routledge handbook of sports marketing. Routledge.

Jones, I., 2015. Research Methods for Sport Studies [online]. 3. London: Routledge.

Sport England, 2016. Volunteering in an active nation [online]. London.

Tetnowski, J., 2015. Qualitative Case Study Research Design. Perspectives on Fluency and Fluency Disorders [online], 25 (1), 39-45.

Zainal, Z., 2007. Case study as a research method. Jurnal Kemanusiaan [online], 9, 1-6.


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