Recent Warwick graduate Jennifer Sibley has been helping out at the Olympic Park as a Games Maker volunteer. We spoke to her about the role and her highlights so far.
How are you involved in the Olympics and Paralympics this summer?
I am a Games Maker at the Copper Box, where Handball and the fencing part of the Modern Pentathlon took place during the Olympics, and where Goalball will be for the Paralympics. I applied over 18 months ago, and following an interview, was asked to be involved!
What does your role involve?
I volunteer as part of the Event Services team, which means I work closely with spectators, welcoming them and ensuring they have the best possible experience at the Games.
What training did you have to undertake?
There were two main training events. At the first our role was explained to us, and we were given practical experience of scanning tickets and using radios. We also covered how to promote diversity and inclusivity at our venues, and how to resolve difficult situations. The second training was in our venue, and included a tour so we could get to know it, which meant we got an early glimpse of the Olympic Park before the Games started!
Have you been able to watch any of the events taking place?
I’ve been fortunate because a lot of the role involves working with spectators, so I’ve been able to see a lot of Handball matches – a sport I knew nothing about before the Games, but one I’ve been really impressed by. I’ve gradually built up a knowledge of the rules and the way it’s played!
What has been your highlight of the London 2012 Games so far?
The Opening Ceremony was fantastic, and the Olympic Park is beautiful, but some of the best memories are ones of being part of a great team, and just being able to help the spectators – such as the relief of one man when I was able to reunite him with a lost ticket, and the family who came to find me after one of the matches to tell me what a great time they’d had. These moments have made the role really worthwhile, and I look forward to doing it again at the Paralympics.
Were you a regular user of the sports facilities at Warwick?
I used the sports facilities quite a bit whilst at Warwick, especially the swimming pool which was one of the reasons I chose Warwick as my university – the sports facilities are really excellent. I was also a member of Latin & Ballroom dancing and Aerobics societies, so I made good use of the dance studios!