A skating enthusiast who got a kick start in her dream career after she helped out at Hastings’ festive ice-rink is appealing for volunteers to help run this year’s event.
Carlie Stace was 14 years old when she first volunteered at the annual attraction which takes residence at Queens Square Priory Meadow from November 25 through to January; including Boxing Day.
Now aged 21 and with an event management qualification under her belt Carlie is urging other ambitious youngsters to get their skates on and sign up. “I’ve roller skated ever since I was 14 months old so when I noticed the ice rink were looking for volunteers back in 2008, I wanted to get involved,” she said.
“I was only 13 at the time and the minimum age was 14, so I made sure I signed up once I was old enough and I’ve helped out every year since.”
“I really enjoy helping people and teaching them how to skate and the experience gave me lots of social and customer service skills. When I turned 18, I became a skate marshall and helped out at other events, that’s when I realised I wanted a career in event management.”
Carlie says she’d recommend volunteering to anyone looking for some good experience. “Every year I’ve looked forward to working at the ice rink. I’ve made some fantastic friends and been able to put everything I’ve learned into practice when doing other jobs.”
Volunteers are taught all aspects of the operation – health and safety, customer service in the skate hire, ice marshalling, teamwork and also have the chance to brush up on their skating skills.
Joanna Kerr, director of T Ice who run the attraction in Hastings says one of its great successes has been the engagement of young people from all walks of life to volunteer for work experience, adding: “The volunteer team were recognised by the Hastings Youth Awards in 2014 and last year, we were delighted to see that one of first volunteers Carlie Stace, became student president of her college and an assistant manager on the rink and volunteer on her unpaid days.”
With festive lighting and snow showers, the ice-rink will be launched with a fabulous disco party on November 25, 4-8pm.
Priory Meadow shopping centre manager, Stacey Bell says they are looking forward to a marvellous Christmas in Hastings.
“Having the ice rink always adds to the festive spirit and it’s great to see it being such a success and bringing so much enjoyment.”
To volunteer at the ice rink email: Jo@ticerink.co.uk.
For information about the ice rink or for tickets for the launch party visit: www.iceskatingtickets.co.uk/priorymeadowhastings.
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