Fifa volunteers pass 15 000 mark

A volunteer helps a spectator find her
seat during the final of the 2008
Vodacom Challenge, which was used as
an early trial run for the 2010 volunteer
system.
(Image: Chris Kirchhoff,
MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For more free
photos, visit the image library)

MediaClubSouthAfrica.com reporter

Only seven days after applications opened for volunteers to help run the 2010 Fifa World Cup, the number of volunteer hopefuls has exceeded the 15 000 places available.

The volunteers will be pivotal to the smooth running of the tournament, helping out in areas such as transport, media, marketing, logistics, accreditation, spectator services, language support, administration and hospitality.

Applications opened on Monday 20 July 2009 and, by 9:30 am today, 15 042 potential volunteers from 133 countries had registered with the World Cup Organising Committee.

“We’re delighted with the phenomenal response and the enthusiasm from people to play their part in helping to successfully deliver Africa’s first Fifa World Cup.” said Danny Jordaan, the organising committee’s chief executive..

The 2010 Fifa World Cup final draw, to be held in Cape Town in December, has attracted 482 applications, while a further 188 volunteers have applied for the Football for Hope festival in Alexandra, Johannesburg, which will be held during the World Cup.

The OC will continue to accept applications until the closing date on August 31 2009, after which the 15 000 volunteers needed for the 2010 Fifa World Cup will be selected.

“We encourage people to continue to apply until the end of August to ensure we have the strongest possible volunteers to assist in all functional areas,” Jordaan said.

“Language support, in particular, will be very important, especially when it comes to assisting foreign fans that will follow their teams to the tournament. So, while we’re very happy with the initial response, we want to stress that the volunteer recruitment process is still very much open.”

Prospective volunteers can apply at www.fifa.com/volunteers2010. Those without internet access or requiring further information about the programme and how to apply at volunteer centres around the country can contact the toll-free volunteer hotline on 0800 52 52 52. Volunteers must be over the age of 18 on 1 March 2010.

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