Almost 68 000 apply for 2010 volunteer programme

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Johannesburg - A total of 67 999 people from 170 countries have applied to become a volunteer for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

During the application period from 20 July 2009 to 31 August 2009, an average of 1 600 applications were received a day.

Chief Executive Officer of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Organising Committee, Dr Danny Jordaan, said the programme proved to be hugely popular.

"We are honoured by the incredible response we have received from around the world," he said.

Applications were received for the World Cup, Final Draw in Cape Town taking on 4 December 2009 and the Football for Hope Festival in Alexandra which will run concurrently with World Cup next year.

According to the LOC there was a strong response from outside of South Africa with Nigerians showing great interest with the highest number of applications outside of the host country with 750 in total.

The United States followed with 554 applications and Brazil was close behind with 489. Zimbabweans registered 449 applications while Italy managed an impressive total of 414.

Other African countries that responded were Cameroon with 375, the Democratic Republic of Congo with 109 and Lesotho with 106.

Locally, with two World Cup stadiums, Johannesburg came in with the most applications, receiving a total of 16 280 applications for Soccer City and Ellis Park.

Pretoria received 8 496 applications followed by the Nelson Mandela Bay with 7 365, Cape Town with 5 998 received volunteer applications Nelspruit and Rustenburg came in close behind as they have received 5 781 and 5 558 respectively.

Durban received 5 148 volunteer applications with Polokwane receiving the total of 5 503 and Mangaung/Bloemfontein has also has a good response of 4 371 applications.

The LOC said that most volunteers had applied to provide administrative support for the tournament, as well as hospitality and ushering services, Fan Park services and information technology and telecommunications.

In order to assist with hearing-impaired spectators, 83 volunteer hopefuls have applied to work in sign language support.

The next step is for the applications to be screened. The interview process then begins in December. Overseas volunteers will be interviewed by teleconference while host city interviews will be conducted simultaneously at venues in each city.

Once the final selections have been made, the volunteers will then be trained in their respective fields before the World Cup kicks off.