Interviews Begin For 2012 Volunteers

The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) brings the selection process for London 2012 volunteers to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA).

Chris Holmes, LOCOG Director of Paralympic Integration and 9 times Paralympic Gold medallist joined local Games Maker applicants at the WPNSA to officially launch the start of the regional interview programme.

The London 2012 sailing competition venue is one of two official selection centres for Games Maker applicants based in the South West.

From today (March 8th) until 20 March 2011, 170 people a day are expected to be interviewed at the venue for a wide range of London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games volunteer roles based both at the WPNSA and other Olympic and Paralympic venues across the UK. 

Around 100,000 people across the UK will be interviewed for Games Maker volunteer roles and it is estimated that 2,000 of these interviews will take place at the WPNSA. A dedicated interview centre at London’s ExCel Centre opened on 1 February 2011 and will remain active until March 2012. The WPNSA launch is the first of eight regional selection events taking place around the UK from today until mid August 2011.

Chris Holmes, LOCOG Director of Paralympic Integration, said:

"We are looking for the best team players from across the UK to volunteer at the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and that’s why we are interviewing right across the UK, starting in Weymouth and Portland today, to find the people who will be the faces of the Games.

"Our team will be finding out if the applicants have got what it takes to be a Games Maker and are willing to go beyond their personal best to help us stage a great Olympic and Paralympic Games. The interview process is a huge undertaking but vitally important to find the right people for the success of the 2012 Games."

100,000 people best suited to the 70,000 volunteer roles on offer will be invited over 14 months to take part in an interview. Interviewees will attend a selection event that comprises of meeting LOCOG staff recruiting for the volunteer roles, an exhibition about Olympic and Paralympic volunteering and a 30 minute interview. Where possible, applicants will be invited to attend the selection event nearest to them.

Given the numbers involved in the UK’s biggest peace-time recruitment drive, no two applications will proceed at the same pace. LOCOG will take most of 2011 to contact applicants and arrange interviews via email and the Games Maker online portal.

David Fursdon, Chair of the South West England Board for the 2012 Games, said:

 "The 2012 Games have inspired a lot of people to volunteer for the first time. We want to encourage them not to wait until the Games, but to start volunteering now.  There are plenty of ways they could already be making a difference in their local communities, either with the diverse range of organisations across the region looking for volunteers, or the many London 2012-inspired activities already happening across the region."

The Games Maker interviews at the WPNSA will be conducted by a team of 130 Selection Event Volunteers who are lending their time to help LOCOG select the best possible Games Maker team. Many of the interviewers at the Weymouth and Portland selection centre are Games Maker applicants with HR and/or significant recruitment experience. All have completed comprehensive training led by LOCOG to ensure a positive, fair and enjoyable interview experience.

Worldwide Olympic Partner McDonald’s is the Presenting Partner of the Games Maker volunteer programme. McDonald’s used its nationwide presence to help attract candidates for the diverse team that will be needed to make the London 2012 Games a success.  The LOCOG Volunteer team held training sessions for many of the volunteers conducting interviews at the world-class training facilities at McDonald’s head office in East Finchley, London.

Weymouth based McDonald’s franchisee, Nick Maybour, said:

"This is a great opportunity for local people to help to deliver the 2012 Games here in Weymouth and Portland and beyond. The volunteer interviewers have a critical task ahead to find people who possess the enthusiasm and dedication needed to be a true Games Maker.  At McDonald’s we have extensive experience of recruiting people with the right attitude and qualities to thrive in a fast paced environment while delivering excellent customer service and hospitality, so we’re delighted to be working alongside LOCOG to build a first-class Games Maker team."