V4V Good Practice Case Studies: Espoo Taekwondo Academy

Sport / Activity: Taekwondo   |   Country: Finland

Which of the four pillars does the example cover?


Pillar 1 – Volunteer strategy and planning



Pillar 3 – Volunteer management and retention


Pillar 4 – Volunteer development and training

Focus of volunteer intervention: Recruitment and training of coaches


The Espoo Taekwondo Academy was established in 2016. One of the main challenges facing the club was a lack of trained coaches. Due to the growth of the club, they had to pay external coaches to help deliver training. The focus of the volunteer initiative was to firstly recruit new coaches, and secondly to recruit more members to the club due to increased coaching capacity.

Activities undertaken:

The club identified suitable volunteers and instructors and provided them with access to training. They have developed a education pathway for coaches which provided continuous support via coach education to help raise standards and the quality of coaching across the club. A key aspect of Taekwondo is that the coaches much grow-up ‘side by side’ with their athletes, so as the athletes get better the coaches improve too. To support this, an hour of mentoring is provided each week for all coaches within the club. This is an attractive offer to help recruit new volunteer coaches into the club.

Challenges faced:

It was challenging to get companies and businesses to agree to support their employees to volunteer on the programme, particularly if the employees were not particularly sport orientated. 85 companies and corporations were targeted, of wich only 14 responded positively, with 30 volunteers eventually being identified for the project from 6 local/international companies. This was perhaps due to the lack of an established volunteering culture in Romania which means that there is limited recognition of the value of volunteering.


Some issues with coach retention – one coach has moved to another club since being trained. The initiative also needs commitment from the coaches to be successful.

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