Volunteers’ clarion call

2009-08-27 12:29

THE true measure of volunteerism is when people sacrifice time, energy, money

and other pleasures in order to tend to the needs of others, and the

satisfaction of making others happy is their only reward. It is most gratifying to note that the spirit of volunteerism was a major contributory factor in the success of the 2009 Fifa Confederations Cup. It is the same spirit we require as our country embarks on another exciting chapter at the 2010 Fifa World Cup in June. Volunteers will enhance South Africa’s reputation as a first-class host.

Volunteerism provides a steady and continuous flow of personnel with a variety

of skills capable of making a significant contribution to society at large.

Indeed, volunteers are a special breed of human beings that come from all

walks of life with a common purpose. Some are professional people – doctors,

teachers, accountants – many are students and others are unemployed.

All are united in their unselfish willingness to make a difference by

offering their services to work in whatever capacity is required without

expectation of remuneration.

South Africa has developed a rich culture of volunteerism around the global

events already staged in this country – and foreign visitors to these shores

have not failed to notice them.

My own experiences in the 1998, 2002 and 2006 World Cups, and the positive contribution of the volunteer brigade, remains fresh in my mind. Visitors singled out the friendly help they received from the volunteers as the highlight of their experience.

After the successful 2009 FCC volunteer programme, which saw close to 40 000

South Africans applying for the 4 000 volunteer positions and providing

invaluable support during the tournament itself, planning for the 2010 FWC

volunteer programme is already in full swing.

South Africans have the chance again now to put up their hands – this time

for the biggest sports event yet staged on the African continent.

Recruitment for the 2010 FWC volunteer programme is under way. We have begun

the process of recruiting the 15 000 volunteers required for the tournament.

Unlike the FCC volunteer programme, the FWC volunteer programme is a global initiative – 80% of volunteers will come from South Africa, 10% from Africa and 10% from the rest of the world. Anyone who is 18 years or older on March 1, 2010, and with a good command of the English language, can apply to be a volunteer.

The application form is available on Fifa.com at www.Fifa.com/volunteers2010,

and for those without internet access there will be a number of venues across

all nine host cities where members of the public will be assisted to apply.

Anyone requiring further information about the volunteer programme can contact the volunteer hotline on 0800 52 52 52 (toll-free in South Africa) or email volunteerprogramme@2010oc.com. The application period ran from July 20 and will cut off on until August 31 2009, after which the application form will be taken off Fifa.com. The Organising Committee’s (OC’s) volunteer department will then begin the process of sifting through the applications.

Once the applications have all been processed, the OC volunteer department

will conduct interviews with the approved applicants in January and February

next year.

The successful volunteers chosen from this interview process will then be

taken through extensive training in March and April next year in all nine of the World Cup host cities. As is the nature of volunteer programmes around the world, the volunteers for the World Cup will not be paid a salary for their work. They will get a stipend on the days they are operational to cover their expenses.

There are 16 areas where volunteers will be used during 2010 FWC. These are in the areas of accreditation, administration, environmental services, welcome and information services, information technology and telecommunication, language support, legal work in the rights protection programme, logistics services, marketing, media, protocol services, spectator services, ticketing, transportation, hospitality and ushering services and volunteer management.

(Dr Danny Jordaan is the CEO of the 2010 Fifa World Cup Local Organising

Committee)


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