VOLUNTEERS FLOCK TO SIGN UP TO VOLVO OCEAN RACE DESTINATION VILLAGE DUTY
Abu Dhabi, UAE – 10th December 2014 - As the first boats in the Volvo Ocean Race (VOR) approach Abu Dhabi to complete Leg 2 of the epic, round-the-world sailing challenge, volunteers from across the emirate have signed up for key roles at the Destination Village on the UAE capital’s Corniche Breakwater, to help visitors enjoy the race Stopover activities that start this weekend.
Abu Dhabi is hosting 23 days of watersports, entertainment and cultural events to celebrate the arrival of the racing fleet, and there has been no shortage of eager VOR fans willing to sign up as volunteers for the event, which runs from December 12 to January 3.
A very large number of visitors are expected to enjoy the myriad attractions and activities at the free-to-enter, purpose-built Village, which is open from 12 midday until 9pm on weekdays and from 11am to midnight on weekends, and volunteers from all age groups and from all walks of life jumped at the chance to join in the fun, via the emirate’s volunteering organisation Takatof.
“Even though I have a full-time job I‘ve been volunteering through Takatof for more than two years,” said 34-year-old Abdulla Al Zubaidi. “I have worked all over the UAE but get the most enjoyment and benefit when I’m representing the UAE at international events.
“The Volvo Ocean Race sounds like an incredible challenge so I’m looking forward to the boats getting here and seeing what the crews endure while at sea.”
Students from the emirate’s many educational institutions are also out to ensure they add experience to their education by signing on for Destination Village duty.
“I’ve done more than 500 hours of volunteering through Takatof. As a student I have spare time that I can give and think it’s important to use that time constructively,” said Mohammed Omar, 22. “With events like the Volvo Ocean Race, that attract international visitors, it’s important to create a positive impression about our country and that comes from UAE nationals being the first point of contact when people are looking for information.”
Mohammed’s brother, Ahmed, also signed on, and is excited to be involved.
“I started volunteering because my brother spoke so highly about his experiences. I have spent about 100 hours volunteers on Takatof projects but this is my first event as big as the Volvo Ocean Race. It will be interesting to be a part of it as well as to represent my country in front of our visitors”.
The Destination Village and Volvo Ocean Race Stopover is once again being hosted by Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), and event co-ordinator Mohammed Al Zaabi emphasised the key role the volunteers have in delivering a successful event.
“It’s important that we create the best possible impression of our country in the eyes of international visitors,” he said. “That starts with making sure they meet the people of the UAE and Takatof does just that. They provide volunteers who are role models and can talk passionately about our country and our culture.”