With this week marking the 74th annual National Volunteer Week put on by Volunteer Canada, the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association has set out to publicly recognize some of its most distinguished volunteers. National Volunteer Week 2015 is running from April 12-18.
Larry Bilton has made huge contributions to the volunteer program for CFSA. Larry started volunteering in Alberta over 15 years ago while his kids were involved in CFSA’s Jumps and Bumps program.
While his children are no longer actively participating in the program, Larry has continued to support the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association because of his passion for sport. Not only does he continue to give back, but his whole family has been involved in with the organization.
“One of the important pieces of volunteering is having the great family support I have. We don’t have kids in the sport any more so this is selfish time for me to do what I love, my wife backs my pursuit of that,” Larry says. “The family gets involved from everything. My son has been a course worker at World Cups and has worked his way up to Assistant Chief of Course for moguls and half-pipe. My daughter was on the mogul Alberta team years ago and now she volunteers at CFSA and at the World Cup too.”
Through all the years that Larry has been a part of CFSA’s volunteer team, he does not recognize one moment that defines his volunteer journey, but sees it as a combination of things that have made the experience so memorable.
“In general it’s working with the other volunteers and participating in a very positive sport. It’s about the outcomes for the athletes. You watch the athletes try their best, and if you’re working at an event you’re trying to make it the best it is for the athletes and you’re working with other amazing volunteers who have been in the game as long as I have. It’s kind of a combination of all of those things that make it special for me.”
Throughout his volunteer journey with CFSA, Larry has had the opportunity to work with a wide range of people in various positions, and he acknowledges the value of creating relationships with the other volunteers.
“There are a lot of volunteers in the background who have been involved for years and years here in Alberta and don’t get a lot of recognition. They come back for the friendships,” he says. “It’s about coming out and experiencing it. I’ve never met volunteers who aren’t willing to mentor new people who come in. There’s nothing to be afraid of, there’s great opportunities for additional friendships and being part of something special.”
In the spirit of National Volunteer Week, CFSA would like to take this opportunity to appreciate the years of hard work and dedication that Larry has contributed to the program. Larry and all the other outstanding volunteers on our team are a huge part of the growth and development of the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association. We couldn’t do it without them, and we would like to thank all of our amazing volunteers for their continuing support!
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For more information, contact George Fadel.
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The Canadian Freestyle Ski Association is the governing body in Canada for the sport of Freestyle Skiing. With the support of its valued corporate along with the Government of Canada, Canadian Olympic Committee and Own the Podium, the CFSA develops Olympic and world champions in all disciplines of the sport.