By Shawn Lewis –
Autonomous: Acting or free to act independently.
Volunteerism: The use or involvement of volunteer labour, especially in community services.
Two big words used to describe one very simple thing: volunteering on your own for the better of all.
Williams Lake is blessed with more than 150 mountain bike trails and nearly all of them have been built by volunteers. This is the Shangri La of the mountain bike world. The Williams Lake Cycling Club (WLCC) is tasked with the maintenance of this expansive network, and we, too, rely on volunteers to help get this done. Our trails are legal and as such are protected. So, when the topic of land use comes up at various levels of government and when industry needs to do their harvesting, we have protection. However, this legal status is not granted without a cost. The WLCC must demonstrate the ability to maintain these trails.
Over the years, 13 and counting, the WLCC has held numerous trail maintenance days to help get the networks into shape. Sometimes we have specific projects; other times our task is less focused and more encompassing as we try to clear an entire network of trails. Ultimately, the amount of work that gets done depends on the number of volunteers we have on these days. Some days have been wildly successful, and we have cleared the entire Fox Mountain network. Other days are less so, but every time we get people out, I find it rewarding. I understand that people are not always available to help out on a given day with life being so busy for most. I also know that many people still want to help in their own way. So, what can you do?
You can volunteer in different ways. Even the simplest of tasks, like raking or clearing a trail, is greatly beneficial. There is not much better than ripping along a freshly cleared and raked trail.
So, are you interested in such an undertaking? Does being an autonomous volunteer sound like something you could be? If your answer is yes to either of these questions, and you want to learn more about what you can do to help us, then contact the Williams Lake Cycling Club at email@example.com and we will gladly get you on the path to autonomous volunteerism. Ride bikes, build trail, have fun…
Thanks in advance,
Shawn Lewis, President, Williams Lake Cycling Club