Record-breaking army of volunteers get to work in Abu Dhabi 28 Oct 2009
With the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix just days away, last-minute preparations at Yas Marina are in full swing. And on Wednesday a veritable army of 800 volunteers - the largest ever put to task in the UAE - descended on the circuit to complete a series of training exercises, ahead of welcoming the sell-out crowd for this weekends action.
Abu Dhabi race organisers have formed a partnership with the Emirates Foundation for Philanthropy volunteer programme, Takatof, to help organize the recruitment, training and management of the workforce for the duration of the Formula One event.
Its inspiring to see such a positive response from the community, said Richard Cregan, CEO of the Yas Marina Circuit. Each volunteer is playing a significant role in representing their Emirate during this historic event. The enthusiasm Ive seen so far from all the volunteers is incredibly refreshing and we thank them for this.
Maytha Al Habsi, director of Takatof, added: What we have been able to provide to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is precisely the objective of the Takatof initiative. The volunteers are given a meaningful opportunity to both assist their community and develop a skill set. We are particularly delighted that our volunteers will be the face of the race for so many people visiting Abu Dhabi for the first time.
Takatof has provided specialized training for all those helping, as well as technical training, such as health and fire safety. The team of volunteers have all been assigned duties either at the circuit or at other locations within the city, with roles ranging from airport welcome parties to grandstand personnel.
One volunteer, 27 year-old Baraka Bin Ishaq, said: I cant explain how proud I feel when I tell people I will be one of the hundreds of UAE National faces to represent my emirate at this event. This is a once in a lifetime experience for many of us and we are ready to give it our all.