Recruitment has begun for the nearly 25,000 volunteers it will take to make the 2014 Olympics successful. The task of combing the world for the best of the best lies in the hands of the Organizing Committee and their 26 participating volunteer centers.
Here’s how it works: Interested volunteers must first pass the online tests found at vol.sochi2014.com; they are still taking applicants. The next round is interviews. Those who receive emails will be granted a face-to-face or via Skype interviews and will be quizzed on their efficiency, their ability to deal with pressure and their dedication to the Games. Language skill as also looked upon favorably, as this is an international event.
Candidates will answer questions in English about why they want to volunteer and regarding the Olympics and Paralympics. Points will be awarded to each person who interviews, and those with the highest scores will likely be given team leader positions at the Games.
Those who make it to the next round are in and will begin training for the Games in Sochi. The training program is one of the biggest, toughest projects for the Organizing Committee. Over 30% of the Games staff will be made up of volunteers and will be stationed in Sochi in 20 different areas of activity. Some will be translators, others on the welcoming committee, and still others will help organize the Closing Ceremony. Almost 85,000 people have applied to volunteer as the last count, the majority (13,000) coming from the Krasnodar Region of Russia.
It’s a long road still ahead for both applicants and interviewers alike, but the daunting process will eventually be over. And in the end, it’s the work of volunteers and their Olympic spirit that helps makes the Games what they are, one of most exciting sporting events on Earth.