National Volunteer Week: Barry Poulsen

It’s Day 3 of National Volunteer Week, presented by the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation – and today we’re sharing Barry Poulsen’s story.

Barry started with Ashburton Soccer Club over 35 years ago, initially as a coach for his daughter's team and now remains as the Club's Referee Coordinator, managing a large group of Miniroo and Futsal referees.

Barry has been a life member since 1990 and his support of the Club has been unwavering. He was heavily involved with the AWSC and a champion of female participation; coaching and training referees; and involved in the Women's Club committee.

Barry helped the Club set up a Futsal competition in 1994 which continues in Ashburton in 2020.

Barry was also involved as Chairman of Victorian Soccer Federation.

Barry contributes every weekend during the winter season. He is always at Warner Reserve, supervising and managing the referees – and then does it all again in summer for Futsal. He runs annual training to ensure the Club always has young referees available for matches – and has trained referees who have gone on to referee at State Level.

Barry has supported Ashburton United Soccer Club in all its forms since 1984 – the club’s longest serving volunteer. He is there rain, hail or shine each Saturday and Sunday morning during winter making sure his referees know the laws of the game, are respected and are respectful of the game.

Barry has a great rapport with the young referees, gives them the opportunity to learn and stay involved in the game  as other than players. He teaches them responsibility and to be leaders on the field.

Barry regularly participates in all Club events, supports the Club in a very unassuming way, has a great understanding and appreciation of the Club history and what it means to the community. In turn, he has become very important to the fabric of the Club, celebrating his 80th birthday with the Miniroos on a match day in June 2018.

Barry – club volunteers like you are one in a million - and we're pleased to shortlist you for the Volunteer of the Year Award at the FV Community Awards later this year.

You'll also receive an FV prize pack, and your club will receive an FV training pack.

Thank you to Ashburton Soccer Club for nominating Barry and allowing us to share his story with our community.