Volunteer programme launched for FIFA U-17 WC

New Delhi [India], Mar. 6 (ANI): The Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017 on Monday launched its volunteer programme, providing an opportunity for thousands of Indian and international volunteers to be part of India's first-ever global football tournament, which will take place across six cities between 6 and October 28.

The comprehensive programme aims to reach out to people over 18 from a variety of backgrounds and involve them in the FIFA U-17 World Cup.

It will have a strong emphasis on diversity and gender equality, welcoming candidates from all sectors of society. Applicants who cannot be physically available during the tournament at its six main venues can become e-volunteers and spread the competition's message digitally.

Speaking about the launch, LOC chairman Praful Patel said, "This is an opportunity for all our countrymen to be involved in the tournament, which will be a historic event for India. Volunteers play an extremely important role in every FIFA tournament and they will play a central role in India 2017, bringing all Indians together in various capacities to make this event a huge success. I am confident that the volunteer programme will leave a lasting legacy of a new and more vibrant sporting culture in India."

LOC tournament director Javier Ceppi said, "The interest that the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017 has generated so far among Indians is unprecedented. Through different sources, we have already received thousands of applications to be a part of the tournament, which we can now channel through the volunteer programme to make sure that everyone who wants to be involved in this historic event gets a chance to apply."

"For us, the volunteers are the tournament's ambassadors. In many cases, they will be the first faces that the competing teams, spectators, media and other guests will see when they arrive at matches. They will really be the 25th team in the tournament," he added. (ANI)