Japanese non-profit The Nippon Foundation has become an official contributor of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo, organisers announced today to coincide with the start of the orientation sessions.
The Tokyo-based foundation will contribute to the Organising Committee's volunteer programme in its role as an official contributor.
The organisation is set to create some of the content used in the volunteer training schemes, both for applicants and instructors, and will develop interviews for volunteer selection.
"It gives me great pleasure to welcome The Nippon Foundation as an official contributor," said Tokyo 2020 President Yoshirō Mori.
"With volunteers likely to be a key factor in the success of the Tokyo 2020 Games, we are delighted that The Nippon Foundation has a wealth of knowledge and experience that will support the creation of training programmes, the training of teachers and interviewers, and the motivation of volunteers."
Tokyo 2020 recently announced "Field Cast" and "City Cast" as the names of the Games and city volunteers.
More than 200,000 people applied to be a volunteer at the Games in the Japanese capital.
Tokyo 2020 today held the first orientation session of the Tokyo 2020 volunteer programme, covering 350 applicants who reside in Japan.
The session started by a 45-minute presentation of Tokyo 2020 and the key roles the Field Cast will play.
It was followed by a group activity to start building some team spirit.
Then, the applicants had interviews with Tokyo 2020 staff by groups of two for 10 minutes.
The purpose was to learn about their motivations to become members of the Field Cast.
"I helped in my hometown before but I have never volunteered in sport," said one of the volunteers, 26-year-old Yutaro.
"I have been playing basketball for more than 15 years so I thought it would be a great opportunity for me to do some volunteer work during the Games."
Since late January, Tokyo 2020 has been inviting applicants resident in Japan and these sessions will be held regularly until July 2019.
"It was a superb day with hundreds of passionate people who share our will to make the Tokyo 2020 Games a resounding success," Masa Takaya, the Tokyo 2020 spokeman, said.
"We will welcome volunteers who will provide support in various areas.
"What I have seen today gave me great confidence that Tokyo 2020 Field Cast will be up to the task."
Orientation for overseas applicants is due to be held between March and July 2019 via video calls.
General training will begin in October 2019.
"We are very honoured to be able to contribute to the success of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 as a Tokyo 2020 official contributor," Yohei Sasakawa, chairman of The Nippon Foundation, said.
"Volunteers are the driving force behind the Tokyo 2020 Games.
"They will play an important role in making the Tokyo 2020 Games a success and introducing the appeal of Japan to the spectators
who gather from around the world.
"It is not an exaggeration to say that volunteers determine the impression the Tokyo 2020 Games will leave behind."
Official contributors are not part of the Tokyo 2020 sponsorship programme and is "is intended to recognise non-profit organisations that are contributing to the delivery" of the event.