Attended by representatives from FIFA, the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Organising Committee (LOC) and the federal government, the latest LOC Management Board meeting took place in Rio de Janeiro on Thursday.
On the agenda was a progress report on construction work at the stadiums that will host the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013 and the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil, and the success of the Volunteer Programme, which has attracted more than 90,000 applications in a little over a week, already outstripping the figures recorded at previous FIFA World Cups.
The LOC announced that as of Thursday morning a total of 95,477 people had applied to the Programme, which is recruiting Brazilians and non-Brazilians alike to work at the two major tournaments the country will host in the next couple of years and at the draws for both competitions.
In the 16-25 age group, which attracted the highest number of candidates, there were more female than male applicants – 26,044 to 22,672 – with women accounting for 47 percent of all applications.
“I’m delighted to see the people of Brazil responding so well,” said LOC President Jose Maria Marin. “Motivated by the example set by Ronaldo and Bebeto, the first LOC volunteers, they’ve taken the Programme to their hearts and broken records.”
“Some 48,000 applied for Germany 2006 and 70,000 for South Africa 2010, figures that the 2014 FIFA World Cup has already beaten,” added FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke. “FIFA is grateful for that and would like to stress once again that the exceptional atmosphere that surrounds the FIFA World Cup is mainly down to the volunteers.”
The level of integration between FIFA, the LOC and the federal government was also commented on at the meeting.
“We are proud at the fact that we are working together, something that could be seen in the planning of the Volunteer Programme and in the monitoring of the stadiums,” said Marin. “That helps us to move forward more quickly and go further and further.”
Valcke added: “Our greatest source of satisfaction is that we are getting closer and closer. We’ve just completed another satisfactory visit, this time to Cuiaba and Manaus, and we are convinced that the work is right on track.”
As well as taking the opportunity to provide an update on the work carried out by the Brazilian government with regard to telecommunications and tourism, the Executive Secretary of the Brazilian Ministry of Sport, Luis Fernandes, also had this to say: “With each meeting we’re working more and more closely in our preparations for the FIFA World Cup, which is absolutely essential to the success of both the World Cup itself and the FIFA Confederations Cup.”
Also in attendance was CONMEBOL President Nicolas Leoz, who praised the work being carried out in Brazil in preparation for the two competitions: “I do not have the slightest doubt that Brazil will put on a great FIFA World Cup. The country’s people are working with real enthusiasm, love and dedication.”
The tour of venues undertaken by Valcke and members of the LOC and federal government also received a positive appraisal. The FIFA Secretary General has now visited seven stadiums in all and will inspect another five before the end of the year. All those present were agreed that the work carried out at the venues has been tireless and that construction of the stadiums is on schedule.
The next LOC Management Board meeting will be held on 18 October, also in Rio.