Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Volunteering at The Moonwalk London 2012

Cecilia volunteering at the Moonwalk 2012
My name is Cecilia and this is my fourth year at Kingston University. I decided to go straight from my Bachelor degree onto a Masters degree in Media and Communication. Although postgraduate courses may seem like a full-time committment to studying in the library, I have balanced my study-load with engaging in extra-curricular activities! And what’s better than feeling appreciated for volunteering  on a worthwhile cause?! The volunteering team at Kingston University Students’ Union have provided me with numerous opportunities to participate in one-off volunteering events throughout the year.

Some volunteering opportunities might be within your field of interests, some might make your CV shine, but for me the most important thing is to give back to the community. In return for this I’ve also had some  really memorable experiences.

Last month in the midst of reading, research and wild essay writing I received an email from KUSU Volunteering which caught my eye – the chance to volunteer at The Moon Walk London 2012.

Women taking part in the Moonwalk 2012
This is an event which gathers close up to 17,000 cheerful, determined and amazing individuals who complete a marathon to raise awareness and money for breast cancer research. A few days later on 12th May 2012, I found myself at a check point on a deserted street, centred between Vauxhall and Waterloo. The bright lights, immense pink tents and the pulse of the increasingly crowded Hyde Park still flash in my mind. I checked the time - it was 1:45am. I observed movement in the horizon, and suddenly hordes of women, of all ages, with colourful, sparkling and creative bras and outfits passed before me. I also saw one very independent blind teenage girl, as well as some men accompany some of the women in The Moon Walk London 2012.

So what was the actual event like from a volunteer’s point-of-view? Well we were extremely looked after by the group leaders –they were welcoming and caring; we were taken by bus to and from the tent area in Hyde Park and we were provided with a kit of necessities, including lots of food, hot drinks and snacks throughout the night. It was cold and sometimes tiring standing in one spot for the whole night, but the walkers were cheerful and we encouraged them the best we possibly could.

This volunteering experience is so valuable to me. It felt amazing volunteering at the event, predominantly because it was for such a great cause. I’m glad that my cheering and encouragement of the runners helped spur them on to do their best. I like to think that my smiles and clapping played a role in their achievement of crossing the finishing line after more than a five hours walk through the streets of London at night. 

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