Saturday, August 7, 2010

Guangzhou Residents willing to assist at Asian Games

Gz2010Image via Wikipedia
Residents from all walks of life were eager to apply as volunteers for the upcoming 16th Asian Games and 2010 Guangzhou Asian Para Games.

A total of 921,689 applications had been submitted to the Games organizing committee by the deadline on Sunday, according to Wang Huanqing, director of the volunteers department of the Guangzhou Asian Games Organizing Committee.

In July alone, more than 20,000 residents applied as volunteers, which was a record for a single month, Wang said.

Although the recruitment of volunteers for the Games had closed, Wang said applications would continue to be accepted until September 30 from those wishing to work as city volunteers.

The 16th Asian Games and the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Para Games need 590,000 volunteers, including 85,000 Games volunteers (60,000 for the Asian Games and 25,000 for the Asian Para Games) and 500,000 city volunteers.

Among the applicants, 86.2 percent are local Guangzhou residents and nearly 70 percent are students and staff at higher education institutions.

Selected applicants will be officially registered as volunteers for the Games before the end of October.

Zhong Nanshan, 70, a respiratory doctor and academician, said he was pleased to learn that he could be a volunteer at the Games.

"Although I am the oldest volunteer, I will do my best to serve the Games and hope to become a member of the Asian Games' medical team," he said.

Zhong, together with Ding Lei, NetEase CEO, and pop star Li Yuchun were chosen earlier this year to represent the Games' volunteers.

Huang Yangnan was the last to apply as a volunteer for the 16th Asian Games

The Guangzhou native, who is majoring in international finance at a university in the United States, flew back to his hometown on July 31 and applied online later that night.

Guangzhou, which on Wednesday marked the 100-day countdown to the 16th Asian Games, is one of the mainland cities with the largest number of volunteers.

The southern metropolis took the lead in opening the country's first volunteer service hotline in 1987 and now has more than 700,000 registered volunteers, who account for 10 percent of the city's population.

By Zheng Caixiong, China Daily

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