“The Olympics are the Holy Grail”: four residents of Saint-Affrique heading to the Paris Olympic Games

“The Olympics are the Holy Grail”: four residents of Saint-Affrique heading to the Paris Olympic Games

Romain Bourges, Catherine Moly, Jean-Luc Boué et Jean-Marie Durand, volontaires aux JO de Paris.

Âgés de 26 à 64 ans ils vont rejoindre l’équipe de bénévoles du rendez-vous sportif planétaire.

Quatre Saint-Affricains font partie des volontaires bénévoles aux Jeux Olympiques de Paris qui ont lieu du 26 juillet au 11 août.

Catherine Molly, 64, retired riding instructor, worked at the town's equestrian center for thirty years. She is a chorister with the Van Berchem vocal ensemble and a member of the Le Sextant theater company. She will be a volunteer from July 23 to 28 at the Palace of Versailles for the cross-country equestrian events.

On August 4, she will be on the road cycling circuit at the Palace of Versailles. She will also participate as a volunteer in the closing ceremony of the Olympic Games at the Stade de France: "I applied online in May or June 2023. You had to fill out a large file with 180 questions. You have to show your credentials. As the weeks go by, we receive proposals that we accept or not. We have training by videoconference and on the site."

Volunteers make themselves available during their holidays or free time. Travel and accommodation costs are their responsibility. They benefit from one meal per mission and a Navigo Pass for transportation.

Catherine Molly has already attended the eventing competition as a spectator during the Barcelona Olympics in 1992: "I found it great and I wanted to to take part in the organization of the Paris Olympics. It’s a great adventure to experience at least once in your life. It’s seeing great riders and taking part in their success. I had time available and family in the Paris region."

Jean-Luc Boué, 55, is an accountant at the Cazotte agricultural high school. He has been a member of Saint-Affrique handball (SAHB) since 2004 and an educator for children under 9 years old.

Everyone has their role

He was president of the sports committee and treasurer of the Saint-Affricain sports employers' group. Jean-Luc Boué is assigned to Arena 4, Porte de Versailles, in Paris, from July 26 to August 4. He will guide the public during table tennis events.

From August 7 to 11, it will be during the weightlifting events. In Montpellier, Jean-Luc Boué volunteered for the boys' handball world cup in 2017, the women's European handball championship in 2018 and the women's football world cup in 2019.

Jean-Marie Durand, 52, is a customer service manager at La Poste in Millau. He is licensed at SAHB. In Montpellier, in 1998, he volunteered at the football World Cup and in 2017 at the men's handball world championship.

In 2018, he worked at the European Women's Handball Championship in Montbéliard. For the Olympic Games, Jean-Marie Durand will volunteer from July 18 to August 4 at the Invalides site in Paris, where the archery events will take place: & quot;I'm in the transportation department. I will manage the incoming and outgoing flow of official vehicles."

Romain Bourges, 26, is a postman at La Poste de la Cavalerie. He is licensed at SAHB. He volunteered in 2017 at the handball world championships in Rouen and in 2018 at the Women's Handball Euro in Paris: "It was the Normandy handball league that applied for me because at the time, between 2015 and 2018, I was very invested in this league, the region from which I come. I learned in 2021 that I was preselected and at the end of 2022 my selection."

From July 25 to August 7, he is assigned to the Arena Paris Sud for the handball events: "I will accompany the teams for training at the Olympic Village and in Saint-Denis during matches at the Arena Paris Sud."

Confidences

"For me it’s the culmination of a volunteer career, comments Jean-Luc Bou& eacute;. In the organization of international events, the Olympic Games are the Holy Grail. It is the global organization par excellence. There is no bigger organization and it’s happening in France. For me, it’s a great human adventure." For Jean-Marie Durand, "havingété chosen as a volunteer among 300,000 applications is a privilege. I hope for great encounters and a great human adventure." For Romain Bourges, the Olympics “mean living an unforgettable experience, both humanly and sportingly. It’s also the culmination of all these years of volunteering. It’s a very great pride."

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