Dozens of young and energetic people have taken to Russian streets to call on their peers to volunteer as the country prepares for the Sochi Olympics in 2014.
If you are stopped by a crowd of dancing young people while walking down Moscow's Old Arbat street, fear not. They are just looking for volunteers to help organise the Sochi Winter Olympics.
The initiative was undertaken by the Russian Olympic Committee. Called “VolonTour”, the campaign is aimed at boosting the culture of volunteering, which is far less popular in Russia than around the world.
As part of the program, young people who have already decided to help out the Olympic Committee will try to catch the attention of their peers aged 18 and over and encourage them to join in.
“This is a truly unique opportunity – to come to the Olympics for free, to wear a special uniform and to see your favourite sportsmen,” said the head of the committee, Dmitry Chernyshenko. “This is the event of one’s lifetime. Our committee will choose the best of the best.”
Volunteers who win the competition will perform a wide set of tasks, from dealing with delegations to taking part in the closing ceremony.
There are currently 26 regional volunteering centers across Russia. It is also possible to join the organization on the Internet. The committee plans to involve over 200,000 volunteers. They will make up around 30 per cent of all staff involved in the organization of the Olympics.
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