Giving Back to the Community – Why Recreation and Leisure in Local Government has become a sought after role

Why does Rec People do what we do?

Why do others want to do what we do?

The more people I interview, the more I see a common theme in the type of person who either wants to work in our industry or already does, but wants to move sideways or upwards in their career.

Most people want to give back to their community or they want to help others. There are those who just want to climb the corporate ladder, and they don’t answer the question particularly well, but when asked “why do you work in LG and in sport and rec” it’s the same response.

“Community sport and recreation activities were one of my favourite things growing up, I want to make sure the next generation has the opportunity to have those same experiences”

Providing others with the opportunities we were afforded when young is a really strong motivator.

Those of us who were introduced to sport or participated in leisure and recreation pursuits from a young age, know the value and benefits this brings later in life.

Sport has the power to unite people in a way that little else can, building resilience, personal confidence and awareness and enhances self esteem.

All of these attributes including improved self worth are essential for creating healthy individuals, and therefore communities.

Wanting to live a better and fulfilling life through participation is contagious.

We just want to share it with as many people as we can. And I’m not talking about sharing through sponsored social media posts, I mean, working in a job where you can really make a difference in your community.

And the best place to have that impact is Local Government.

We get to work with grass roots sporting clubs by supporting volunteers to deliver services and by creating places to play.

We provide facilities to the local community such as sports grounds, play grounds, tracks and trails, pools and stadiums and so much more.

We get to design and deliver programs for culturally and linguistically diverse communities in ways that will encourage and enable them to participate.

We influence how our cities and neighbourhoods are designed and built to ensure they are livable, and people can connect to others sharing experiences through sport, recreation and leisure.

Mostly what we do is the fun stuff!

Has anyone ever NOT had fun at a skate park or a playground or at their local park riding a bike or walking a trail or swimming at the local pool or working out in the gym or shooting hoops?

OK, maybe it might not have been so fun when you fell over or hurt yourself as a child, but these experiences also help shape future generations to take risks and to push themselves to do great things.

In recreation and leisure, we don’t issue infringement notices or tell people they can’t do something. We encourage people to get outside and play, by yourself, in teams, for fitness or fun, the more the better!

Maybe we should issue infringements to those who don’t spend more time in the park!

Local government recreation and leisure jobs are becoming more and more sought after. It’s harder for new graduates to enter the industry than ever before due to a combination of a lack of clear and defined career pathways and stagnant, old school recruitment processes.

And it’s not just graduates who are having a hard time.

Those wanting to change careers later in life or those wanting to move into other areas find it hard to break in or get stuck in the same job.

So the million dollar question is “Who wouldn’t want to get a huge amount of satisfaction from turning up to work everyday?”

I know that most of us who work in the industry love what we do, and we stick around because we love it. We might move up, sideways and sometimes down, but it keeps us hooked and coming back.

For those wanting that same satisfaction, Rec People works to provide those opportunities for graduates and new comers to the industry.

We are creating career pathways for new graduates and providing opportunities for people with transferable skill sets and the right attitude to transition into the work place.

It really can’t hurt to have more people positively impacting on the health and wellbeing of our communities. The health, economic, environmental and social benefits are well documented.

As a result, working in Recreation and Leisure in Local Government has become a sought after role for those wishing to make a difference, and we love that we get to play a big part in that every day.


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