Volunteers serve disabled athletes as a way to give back to community
Zhang Chuize, a junior student at Xi'an Technological University, was a volunteer at the National Games that took place in Xi'an in September and stayed on for its following event - the 11th National Games for Persons with Disabilities. He said he's had to learn a lot of new things.
"For example, when we first met disabled athletes, there were things we weren't aware of and didn't understand," he said, "And that sometimes led to the lack of etiquette, so we could handle things the wrong way without knowing it. But volunteer service training helps us get over these problems."
Compared with previous volunteering experience, there are extra tasks which include supporting and guiding athletes at the venue and sometimes helping them change their clothes.
"Being a volunteer in these events makes me more self-reliant. We have been working long hours each day, and we improve ourselves bit by bit in the process," added Zhang. "To see athletes conquering challenges inspires me a lot and that spirit of sportsmanship is contagious."
Zhang isn't alone. For the 400 or so volunteers at the National Games for Persons with Disabilities, that spirit of tenacity is probably one of the most important lessons they take away from this experience.
"These volunteers are considerate, detail-minded and warmhearted," said Lyu Tao, Volunteer Director of Swimming Events of 11th National Games for Persons with Disabilities,
"Their attitude towards work touched the athletes, they showcased the spirit of devotion and friendship that volunteers should do, and that's why they deserve thumbs-up for their hard work."
Zhang said he would attend more events like this because the disabled need more care and love, to serve as a volunteer in sports events for the handicapped is a way to give back the community.