Johannesburg - The 2010 World Cup Local Organising Committee (LOC) has received more than 11 000 volunteer applications just days after the opening of the volunteer programme on Monday.
LOC Chief Executive Officer Danny Jordaan told reporters, shortly after the Legacy Sub-Committee meeting of the Organising Committee's Board of Directors on Friday, that of this total, 10 percent of the volunteers were from the African continent and 1 500 from overseas.
"South Africans and other countries have responded very well to the programme and we expect more applications before the closing date (31 August).
"This is fascinating because it clearly shows that people are looking forward to the event in which volunteers are significantly important. We are very impressed with the current number of applications," said Dr Jordaan.
He said it will be very difficult to select the exact number of volunteers needed, adding that this will require the programme committee to use stringent vetting procedures.
A total of 15 000 volunteers are required of which 10 percent must be from Africa, 10 percent international volunteers and the rest to be selected from South Africa.
The volunteers are required in 16 functional areas including accreditation, marketing, media, protocol services, and transportation, administration, hospitality and spectator services.
The final 15 000 volunteers will further assist in welcome and information services, information technology, environmental services, language support, rights protection programme, logistic services and ushering services.
The meeting, which aimed at discussing the challenges stressed out by FIFA President Sepp Blatter after the FIFA Confederations Cup last month, was attended by Minister of Sport and Recreation Makhenkesi Stofile and the Minister of Tourism Marthinus van Schalkwyk.
Amongst the 2010 World Cup challenges discussed during the meeting were the transportation system, accommodation, legacy programme, logistics and security.
Minister Stofile told reporters the meeting further discussed how best South Africa could improve in terms of transportation and the training programme of volunteers.
"Transport remains a mega challenge. After the FIFA Confederations Cup we were exposed and we identified some challenges which need to be addressed as soon as possible.
"Therefore during the meeting we discussed how best we can improve our transportation system for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. We will come up with possible strategies on how we can improve and manage transport and traffic congestion," Minister Stofile said.