The Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG) and Beijing Olympic Games Volunteer Work Coordination Group announced that the recruitment for volunteers of the Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games is officially launched on August 28.
Both Liu Qi, president of the BOCOG and secretary of the Beijing Municipal Committee of the CPC,and Jacques Rogge, president of International Olympic Committee (IOC), delivered televised addresses to extend their congratulations.
Qiang Wei, deputy secretary of the CPC Beijing Municipal Committee, chief of Beijing Olympic Games Volunteer Work Coordination Group attended the ceremony and made a speech. Li Binghua, executive vice-president of BOCOG and vice chief of Beijing Olympic Games Volunteer Work Coordination Group, presided over the launching ceremony.
Liu Qi pointed out in his address, "The recruitment of Olympic volunteers will be conducted in accordance with the plans of IOC and BOCOG. It is important in promoting the preparations of the Games, and opens up opportunities for the general public and friends from home and abroad to participate in the Games and serve the Games."
He noted, "To host a 'high-level' Olympic Games 'with distinguishing features' is a solemn commitment made by Chinese Government and BOCOG and it is also the common expectations of the Chinese people.
"In 2008, the volunteers' smiles will be the best name cards for Beijing. Since the Olympic volunteer program was initiated on June 5 last year, the preparations have progressed smoothly."
Liu Qi extended his gratitude to the friends from home and abroad who had always shown great interest in and offered powerful support to the preparations for the Games, and hoped that all the Chinese people, including those in Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and overseas students could be actively involved in Olympic volunteer application.
Once recruited, they are expected to promote volunteerism, disseminate Olympic spirit, practice the concept of "people's Olympics", enhance service awareness, improve their service abilities, and bear the historical responsibility and glorious mission of making contributions to the Beijing Olympic Games.
Mr. Rogge confirmed the volunteers' contributions to the Olympic Games, and called on people from China and other countries to serve the Games as volunteers so that they may greet the world in 2008, "Welcome to Beijing!".
The instant the induction bar was touched by Qiang Wei, Yang Yue, Zhu Shanlu and Liu Jingmin; meanwhile, the online application system for Olympic volunteers was initiated.
Later, the volunteer consultancy hotline (86-10-12308) of Beijing Olympic Call Center was officially opened as Zhao Fengtong, Li Binghua, Tong Xiaoquan touched the crystal ball simultaneously.
Liu Jian, Office Director of Beijing Olympic Games Volunteer Work Coordination Group and Secretary of Beijing Youth League Committee, talked with the first group of applicants on the site.
Qiang Wei pointed out considerate services and sincere smiles of Games-time volunteers will enhance the friendship and solidarity among people with different ethnic and cultural backgrounds and in different regions; demonstrate the unique charm of Olympic Games; and promote the harmonious development and mutual advancement of human society.
The launching ceremony also unveiled the title and slogan of the "Smile Theme Activity".
The song "Smile, Beijing" marked the climax of the ceremony. Children wearing the costumes of Fu Wa, the Beijing Olympic mascots, held the balloons in five Olympic colors and painted smiling faces on the balloon together with the spectators.
The launching ceremony also released the first issue of the periodical of Beijing Olympic Games Volunteer Work Coordination Group, Volunteer -- Together with Olympic Games.
After the ceremony, BOCOG and Beijing Olympic Games Volunteer Work Coordination Group held a joint press conference, expounding the overall situation of the volunteer program and policies concerning Games-time volunteer recruitment, and answered questions from domestic and international journalists.
It is reported that 70,000 volunteers would be needed for the Olympic Games, and another 30,000 for the Paralympic Games. The majority of volunteers of the Olympic and Paralympic Games will be recruited from the universities in Beijing. BOCOG also plans to recruit a certain number of volunteers from the residents nationwide, as well as compatriots from Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao, overseas Chinese, students studying abroad, and foreigners.
The application process will start successively in light of actual needs and situations. The applicants in Beijing may submit their applications in the following manners: The university teachers and students (including those from Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and foreign nationals) can enroll voluntarily in the recruitment outlets on campus from August 28 2006; other people may apply via the BOCOG online system or by correspondence. Meanwhile, certain organizations will be designated by BOCOG to receive the applications by their employees according to the requirements of professional volunteers.
From December, the applicants who reside in other provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities may enroll in such manner as designated by their local Communist Youth League Committees.
For compatriots from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, overseas Chinese, students studying abroad, and foreigners: if they work or reside in Beijing, the application mode designed for the applicants in Beijing may also apply; otherwise, they may apply from March, 2007 via BOCOG online system.
The recruitment in co-host cities (Qingdao, Tianjin, Shanghai, Shenyang, Qinhuangdao, Hong Kong) will be arranged by the sub-committees of the BOCOG according to the general policy formulated by BOCOG.
(China Daily August 28, 2006)