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Foreigners join volunteer force at Special Olympics
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About 300 international volunteers joined Shanghai Special Olympics, offering services to participants from all over the world.


More than 80 foreigners presented their application sheets in China and they are deployed and coordinated in the same way as their Chinese counterparts, said Chen Zhenmin, head of the Community Participation and Volunteer Department of the Games Steering Committee.


Another 198 volunteers from 30 countries and regions joined the Games through online applications to provide transportation, publication and sport operation services, according to Andrey Churfov, Program Development Director of Special Olympics International. Most of them are from the United States and European countries.


"I joined the volunteers program with 30 of my colleagues here. It was a wonderful experience," said Peggy Phillips, chief finance executive of an American joint-venture in Shanghai.


Peggy said she worked almost ten hours a day and was exhausted, but she was glad that her language advantages could be helpful.


Foreign doctors also joined the Games in Shanghai. About 20 chiropodists from the United States, Canada, Ireland and Belgium, for example, joined a "Fit Feet" program to provide foot care for athletes.


Song Junyao, an official in charge of the "Healthy Athletes" program, said about 100 foreign doctors flew to Shanghai for the Special Olympics on their own expenses. "Their devotion and dedication moved many people here in China."


(Xinhua News Agency October 10, 2007)

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