The Mancunion

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Sport Volunteering: Viviane’s story at the 2016 Rio Olympics

With JustFest just around the corner, read the story of Viviane Kemgne, who volunteered at the biggest sporting event in the world

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“Since I missed the opportunity to volunteer for the London Olympics, I thought this was my time to give back to the biggest sporting event in the world,” is why Viviane Kemgne decided to apply as a volunteer at the Rio Olympic Games last year, as an Event Services team member at the Maracaña Stadium in Rio De Janeiro. An application form and an interview later, Viviane was accepted and jetted off to Brazil to be part of the biggest sports event in the world.

Viviane contacted the Sports Volunteer Scheme for help with her volunteer work in Rio, and received advice from Ellen Stephenson on travel, accommodation, and was told about how this could go towards her receiving recognition on her degree certificate for her sports volunteering. If you want to get involved with the Sports Volunteer Scheme then visit here.

The Games themselves were surrounded by some negativity, due to the fact that most of the nation wasn’t in favour of the games, due to Brazil’s economic state at the time. Despite that, Viviane thought that the Games brought some good: “I believe I embedded the Rio Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect during my work… Even after all the doubt of hosting the Games, I genuinely believe it brought hope to the people of Brazil to be ambitious and kick-start their economy post-World Cup and post-Olympics. And with that, I believe the 2016 Rio Olympics legacy will live on.”

“Coming back after the atmosphere of the Closing ceremony, I was sad that my Olympic adventure was over but also excited for the future of Rio and the next host city of Tokyo in 2020. My favourite moment was when Brazil won the men’s football final. The atmosphere in the stadium was immense as the crowd cheered with pride!

“I experienced other sports like athletics, and also watched weightlifting for the first time. I was grateful to have met and socialised with talented world-class athletes during this experience. This gave me a great appreciation for not just the athletes, but also all the hard work that goes on in the background to be able to deliver an outstanding event.”

Evidently, Viviane had a great time in Rio volunteering, but she also gained vital skills that she will take into employment. We all know that doing sport whilst at university is something that employers look favourably upon, but sports volunteering also highlights to an employer just how good you really are.

To see what opportunities are available to you in any volunteering capacity, visit JustFest’s Volunteering and Social Justice Festival on Tuesday 18th October in Academy One from 11:30am – 4.30pm.