Volunteers gear up for busy 2010

18 December 2009

While many South Africans will be relaxing over the holiday season, the 2010 Fifa World Cup Organising Committee (OC) will still be hard at work preparing for the task at hand next year.

For the OC volunteer department, the New Year will bring with it the conclusion of the selection process and the beginning of training for the 15 000-strong group of volunteers that will help make 2010 happen.

In January, the selection of the final 15 000 volunteers who will provide support at the 2010 Fifa World Cup™ will begin in earnest. These volunteers will be selected from a shortlist of 37 080 who were pre-selected from a total of 64 500 initial applications received from South Africa and abroad.

The OC volunteer department will conduct interviews with the pre-selected applicants in January and February 2010, while for foreign pre-selected applicants, interviews will be conducted at the country of origin and in some instances through video conferencing.

The successful volunteers chosen from this interview process will then be taken through extensive training in March and April 2010 in all nine of the host cities of the World Cup, while international volunteers will be trained over the internet, to ensure that once the teams arrive, the stadium gates open and the airports fill up, South Africa will be ready for 2010.

For OC chief executive officer Danny Jordaan, the work of the volunteers is vital in ensuring that the tournament goes off without a hitch.

“Volunteers form the backbone of the organisation of events the size of the World Cup,” Jordaan said this week. “We owe those who have already volunteered for the Confederations Cup and the Final Draw a large vote of thanks for all their support – they formed part of the core team which delivered these successful events to the world.

“Next year we will once again rely on these selfless people in our efforts to ensure that we host a successful World Cup.

“The volunteers that will be selected early next year certainly have their work cut out for them, but I know they will stand up to the challenge,” Jordaan said. This is their moment to be part of history, and we will welcome them into the World Cup team next year when selection is finalised.”

The successful applicants will be trained in areas such as accreditation, administration, language support, IT and T, logistics, marketing, media, protocol, transport, volunteer management, and welcome and information services.

Source: 2010 Fifa World Cup South Africa Organising Committee