LA River Ride: Ode to the Volunteers

For those that follow CiclaValley closely(and thank you) know that I’m about 3 1/2 weeks deep into serving as education and volunteer coordinator at the LACBC.

Volunteer01I’m charged with organizing the many traffic safety classes and culling volunteers so our many events, but this month you don’t have to guess hard where everyone’s focus is: The LA River Ride.

Being fresh and new to the job, I never thought about the numbers required to pull such a ride off. Sixty? Eighty?

No. Closer to 300.

I’m sorry, I meant to say 300!!!!!

I don’t even have that many Facebook friends.

While CiclaValley is the #1 news source for all things cycling in the 818, I have to rely on LACBC’s staff, resources and great members to help pull off such a task.

The one thing I’ve learned fast is what amazing base of volunteers we have here. I’ve been a member of LACBC for the last three years and have met a lot of great people through it, but working behind the scenes has raised my awareness to a whole other level.

You find there are volunteers willing to give every minute of their available time to help us out. And then they ask what else they can do. People sometimes do the recruiting for me!

Volunteer02I can’t claim credit for this, I just started here! The dedication comes from people believing in the organization and I’m proud to play even a small role in it.

At the same time, you do see some attrition after people commit to helping out. I knew this would be part of the job. People mean well, but things come up.

My difficulty comes when some of these cancelations bunch up among specific tasks. I work the phones, shuffle people around and do the best I can with the cards in front of me.

To give you an idea, I’ve sent on average 36 emails a day since I’ve started and almost double that the last week.

The one thing I know is that the LA River Ride will go on no matter what because the cycling community wills it.

I feel like Neo from the Matrix tracking all these separate pieces at once, but I love it. Like most others, I’ve met incredible people through the LACBC and look forward to meeting so many more.

If you’re able to help out this weekend with the LA River Ride, it would be great to have you, but don’t do it because I’m asking you. Join because cycling is a gift to us all with the power to join every type of demographic. It’s more than a sport, but a social experience that bring us together.

Check out of volunteer form if you can help, but even more, come join this community.