Thursday, March 30, 2017

How it is to be a member of Ticket Control team.

Hello everyone! I am a member of Ticket Control team. It is my honor to become a volunteer at Lahti FIS Nordic Ski Championships 2017. This is also the very first experience as a volunteer for me, which obviously give me a lot of unforgettable memories. After 5 days working in Ticket Control team, following things are my thoughts about it, which include both the advantages and some drawbacks.

Before coming to the main points, I would like to introduce briefly about my duty in the Ticket Control team. Generally, our team take responsible for checking the ticket and greeting spectators at four different gates. Before the work shift, each member is distributed with a device that can check the code on the ticket to ensure there is no one trying to leak in without ticket. Of course, we greet everyone with a friendly attitude. So, here are some great experiences to be a member in the team:

1. Great team members
It is a interesting fact that the age of member in the team is very diversified. There are high school students to middle-aged members, but all of them are great to work with. In average, each volunteer has to work at least 5 hours for a shift, some can even work for 8 or 9 hours. Thus, it is necessary for everyone to take turn to rest. However, the leader cannot always be there to tell us who can leave or stay. Despite it, all the member are very responsible. We discuss this problem ourselves and guarantee everything go smoothly. There are no such things as someone goes to rest for so long or leaves the shift without notice the others. Moreover, members are really willing to help each other during the work shift. For me, I am so grateful that everyone enthusiastically helps me with the language barrier issue.

2. Volunteer catering
This is more like a personal things, however, I enjoy the cozy feelings in the catering. After long hours standing in the freezing cold, it is the best feeling ever to stay warm inside, and have something to feed the growling stomach to have more energy to continue working. In my opinion, this is an important factor that contribute to my successful volunteer work.

3. Enjoy the atmosphere of the event
I  actually have no idea about skiing or winter sport since I am from a tropical country. Therefore, for whom is in love with skiing, being volunteer is a golden opportunity to enjoy the event when there is no shift. You can freely enjoy all 10 days without worrying about the ticket. However, for me, enjoy the atmosphere is to see how happy the others are and listen to the supporting sound from the stadium, but I did watch some competitions. It is a very new thing to me.

As aforementioned, even though the event is successful, there are several drawbacks I want  to point out. Hopefully, this can make the later events even much greater.

1. Divide and keep track of volunteer shift
I know there are hundreds of volunteer and it is not an easy task for the team leader to check who is at work and not. However, I think this is a problem that need to be solved. I observe that there are some members in the teams are not at work as they are supposed to be, or they come really late and end the shift earlier themselves without announcing to the leader. It can lead to the delay of work since there are 4 different gates to work with. It will be a serious problem if one gate has no volunteer and people just come in without ticket. Maybe the leader should tell everyone to come 30 minutes earlier before the shift. Then, they can check the duty of each member and distribute the work more efficiently.

2. Problem with ticket control devices.
The first problem is that the device does not work so well with electric tickets. In the rush hour, it is very crowded. However, problem with electric ticket cause the members really confusing because the device does not work while there are long lines of people waiting to come in. The second one is the connection issue. With some gates that are so far away from the Main Entrance (Indian Hill gate and Vesijärvi Lake gate), the device goes offline often. Maybe it is due to the large distance that slow down the transmission. It would be great if these two problems are solved, and the process can be come more smooth.

Even though I worked for 5 days only, the event is strikingly unforgettable. This gives me a lot of first-time moments. This is the first time I know how it is to be a volunteer. This is the first time I feel the freezing weather of winter in Finland, feel the pains running through my fingertip and my toe by standing 8 hours outside and more. Despite all of those, I am grateful to become a volunteer in the Ticket Control team.

Nhung Nguyen 1600368

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