“After Brazil, the countries with the highest numbers of applicants were some of those who have already hosted the Olympic and Paralympic Games.”
Christmas may be coming, but the process of selecting the 70,000 volunteers who will help stage the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games is continuing at full steam.
More than 240,000 people who applied are already taking part in the first phase of the process, which includes an online exercise and language assessment. In 2015, interviews will begin, with letters of invitation scheduled to be sent to successful candidates from November.
“The online exercise is a way to engage the candidates and help them understand what it would be like to work at the Rio 2016 Games,” said Flavia Fontes, manager of the Rio 2016 volunteer programme. “It’s a fun way for them to learn about the Games, as well as allowing us to get to know them better. In March, we will open our selection centre, where interviews will be conducted. For international candidates, interviews will be conducted by video conference.”
Applications to volunteer at the Rio 2016 Games came from 192 different countries. Brazilians accounted for 60 per cent of the applicants, with the USA, Russia, China and Great Britain providing the most foreign applications. When the registration period closed at midnight on Monday, 242,757 people had signed up to play a part in the first Olympic and Paralympic Games to be staged in South America. Of this total, 11,069 were from the United States, while the inspirational effect of hosting the Games was reflected in strong interest from recent host nations Russia (10,840), China (8,283) and Great Britain (7,648).
“After Brazil, the countries with the highest numbers of applicants were some of those who have already hosted the Olympic and Paralympic Games,” said Fontes. “These American, Russian, Chinese and British people want to experience this special moment again. And I’m sure that this coming together of people from different backgrounds will make the Rio 2016 Games unforgettable.
“We were very happy with the results. The number of applicants demonstrated the desire of people to participate in the Games and showed that the volunteer spirit is alive in Brazil. The quantity of different nationalities, age groups and backgrounds is making the diversity we are seeking a reality. The Games are for everyone and the volunteers programme already shows this.”
Among the Brazilian candidates, 50 per cent are 25 years old or younger, while 55 per cent are women and 45 per cent men. Applicant ages ranged from 16 to over 80.
The applicants who are selected will be offered a one-year online English course, as well as specific training for their roles. They will also receive a uniform, meals and transport on working days, and a certificate of participation.
For those who missed the deadline for applications, there is still hope: you can register on the waiting list (click here). Candidates must be 18 years old by February 2016 and available to work during the Games.