BU student wins volunteer award for work at London Youth Games

Posted on Thursday, October 18 2012

A Bournemouth University student has been named Volunteer of the Year, for work she did at the London Youth Games.

Third year BA (Hons) Communications and Media student Roseanne Blaze was presented with the award by British judo star Gemma Gibbons, who won a silver medal at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Roseanne, 21, who is from Greenwich but lives in Lansdowne while studying, was chosen from more than 400 volunteers to win the accolade of London Youth Games GamesForce Volunteer of the Year (ages 14-25).

She said: “I was shocked. My mum had to tell me to get up and go get my award because it didn’t actually register that they had just called my name.

“I keep thinking about all the other volunteers that I had worked with at the Games and kept trying to work out why it was me that got the award. Everyone worked so hard at all of the events.”

The London Youth Games are Europe’s largest annual youth sports event, and qualifiers run from November to June, with finals taking place in July at the National Sports Centre in Crystal Palace.

The games are open to young people from across the 32 boroughs of London, and more than 104,000 people took part in this year’s games.

Roseanne was a volunteer team leader, juggling numerous responsibilities – including making sure volunteers and sports officials were all happy, playing a major part in the opening and closing ceremonies, and collating results and working out which teams would be going to the finals.

She said: “I am quite a sporty person but due to injury I cannot compete anymore so I jumped at the chance to help run Europe’s largest annual youth sports event.

“For my second event I was running the disabled athletics which was a truly inspirational day. I was doing similar jobs to before but was also running medal ceremonies and had the privilege of making sure Paralympian David Weir was OK throughout the day.”

Roseanne, who also volunteers while at university, added: “I loved volunteering and really enjoyed myself at the games. I have already signed up to be a team leader at the Games next year.”

She was one of three London Youth Games volunteers shortlisted for the award, and was announced as winner at an awards ceremony at Lord’s Cricket Ground on October 9.

Among Olympic stars at the ceremony were cyclist Joanne Rowsell, who was part of the women’s team pursuit trio who broke the world record and won the gold medal, and rower Naomi Riches who was part of the victorious mixed coxed fours team at the Paralympics.

Roseanne said: “It was amazing and such an honour to meet all these Olympic stars.

“All of the athletes that were there made time to speak with everyone and didn’t mind posing for photos and having a chat.

“It was quite funny because some of the athletes I had met before when running events and what was really nice was that they remembered me.”