I've decide to start blogging about some of the volunteer work in the IT arena I've been doing for the past few years. More to promote those organizations I support than to promote my selfless super-human acts of volunteerism. Because frankly, most of the people I work with in these volunteer groups work a lot harder at it than I do.
So in my first instalment, let's talk about itSMF Canada. The Canadian ITIL users group, in short. :-)
I've volunteered to help run the Program Committee for the 2008 National Conference. Bonus, since it'll be held in my home town (Vancouver, BC). I think the one thing I like the most about volunteering for program committees (yes, I've done this sort of thing before, another story for another post) is the variety of people you meet who are interested in speaking at your conference. In addition to that, the people you end up recruiting to speak who never thought they would!
There's some amazing stories out there about what people are accomplishing in the IT world, and I love being able to help them share those stories. of course, you also have to sort the wheat from the chaff and try and weed out the people who just want to plug their consulting company or "all in one" service desk software package... But in a way, that's fun too.
The biggest excuses for not volunteering are always a) didn't know I was needed/wanted or b) just don't have the time. The thing is, EVERYONE is wanted, you just need to reach out to these organizations (www.itsmf.ca) and say "Hey, how can I help?" Also, the more people who help out, the less time any one volunteer needs to give up.
So where is this conference at? Well, we can still use help - anyone interested in volunteering can contact the conference team via 2008NationalConference@itsmf.ca. So there's how you can get involved!
As for the conference itself, we have the speaker submissions open. Are you interested in speaking at the conference, national exposure, and free conference pass? :-) Take a look at our speaker submission site and sign up! Every submission will receive equal consideration. We've got a good start on people signing up, but would love to see more.
The facility is booked in downtown Vancouver BC, and all the conference details are available at the conference site.
So that's my big ad for the conference. From now on, we'll discuss the details of how the volunteering there is going.