10,000 Volunteer Walk Leaders!

PDF Print

We are really excited to celebrate that we have trained 10,000 volunteers across Scotland to be Walk Leaders.

Due to the enthusiasm and commitment of our volunteers, we now have 550 weekly Health Walks across the length and breadth of Scotland. Our walks are enjoyed in places such as Dumfries in the south to Shetland in the North, Aberdeen in the east to Barra in the west and many more places in between. Thank you Walk Leaders!

We trained our first group of volunteers in Alloa in January 2002. During that first year we trained 119 volunteers over 12 courses, which has increased in 2017 to 68 courses across Scotland.

Here is what our volunteers have said about our training:

"The course gave me confidence in welcoming people and shaping walks around them. I am often surprised by what they are able to do and always delighted by the conversation”. Mike Chambers, Walk Leader

“The walks are varied and since I have become a Walk Leader, I look forward to my Thursday’s with great enthusiasm, having made some new friends and re-established old ones. The course itself was a full day of training and understanding what is expected of a volunteer. I felt very confident to be taking on volunteer’s duties as a result, and highly recommend it to anyone who wants to walk and perhaps help walkers to really enjoy a good morning or afternoon out”. Rosie Waltes, Walk Leader with Active Stirling

“The one day Walk Leader course was an ideal opportunity to meet with fellow Walk Leaders you don’t always see on a daily basis, to share ideas, experiences in the friendly atmosphere of the course. Practically and personally I benefitted from a greater understanding and awareness of the roles of a Walk Leader in the full knowledge that you are supported by Paths for All at all times.” Scott Murphy, Walk Leader

Our volunteers come from a variety of backgrounds and are united by a love of walking and a desire to see others being healthier and more active. Their valued role within their communities as Walk Leaders means that they can encourage and help others to get fitter, healthier, and enjoy the social benefits of being part of a Health Walk group. Volunteers are part of a national network of Health Walks which are supported by local projects and in some cases are entirely led by volunteers. Volunteers attend our one day Walk Leader course which provides the knowledge, skills and support needed to safely lead walks and manage the group by planning and risk assessing a safe route.

Our volunteers are also part of something much bigger; we recently launched our Scottish Health Walk Network which brings together over 100 projects of all shapes and sizes, all with the common goal of creating a happier healthier Scotland by supporting communities to walk more. As a network we can strengthen our messages, increase our impact and improve our support to organisations delivering walking opportunities in Scotland.

How can you get involved? May 2018 is National Walking Month and we want to encourage more people to try everyday walking. If you have never been along to a Health Walk and want to know more, we have an interactive map with details of a walk near you. If you would like to just try a one-off walk to see what it’s like, why not go along to a Big Fit Walk in your community during the month of June. If you would like to know how to volunteer as a Walk Leader please speak to the leader on your walk or the local project coordinator who can give you more information about training.

© 2014 Paths for All - Registered Scottish Charity No: SC025535, Company Limited by Guarantee No: 168554 inc. 19 Sept 1996 at Companies House, Edinburgh