Philadelphia, PA (April 27, 2015) – The World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 today announced that its highly anticipated online volunteer registration is now officially open to the public. With more than 10,000 volunteers needed for the World Meeting of Families Congress (September 22-25) and Papal Visit (September 26-27), individuals 18 years of age and older can now register here http://worldmeeting2015.volunteerhub.com/ for the opportunity to play a crucial role in this once-in-a-lifetime event. Currently at launch, there are more than 100 volunteer opportunities throughout the week of the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015, including opportunities related to the Festival of Families and Papal Mass. More volunteer options will likely be added upon the announcement of a formal itinerary for Pope Francis’ visit to Philadelphia by the Vatican. That announcement is anticipated in early summer.
Partnered with Verified Volunteers, the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 volunteer registration site provides registrants with a simple yet secure platform to complete an online volunteer application form and a required level three (3) background check, in accordance with the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s volunteer protocol. This background check typically takes 24-48 hours to process and the cost is assumed by the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015, although registrants do have the option to donate the $28.00 fee back to the event. With a wide variety of volunteer opportunities available throughout the week – ranging from bilingual and multilingual skills for translation purposes to greeters at Philadelphia International Airport to WMOF social media support – the World Meeting of Families volunteer registration site will offer registrants the option to select different assignments as well as specific days and times. The average time to complete the World Meeting of Families volunteer registration is estimated at 4.5 minutes.
Donna Crilley Farrell, Executive Director of the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 commented, “The single most frequently asked question we receive is ‘How can I help? With today’s official launch of the World Meeting of Families Volunteer Registration Site, we can finally and happily say ‘VOLUNTEER!’ This event will undoubtedly be one of the largest in Philadelphia’s history and we gratefully invite volunteers to play a special role in this event and to serve as the welcoming face of Philadelphia to all of our domestic and international guests.”
To ensure an organized volunteer infrastructure and successful effort for this international event, the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 will require all approved volunteers to participate in formal training programs throughout summer 2015, which will fully prepare individuals to assist delegates and guests in a wide variety of ways while also providing an outstanding visitor experience for all those who will come to Philadelphia.
Volunteers will also be professionally outfitted in colorful, easy-to-identify and fully branded volunteer uniforms. These uniforms, which will include t-shirts, jackets and hats, will be designed, produced and distributed by Aramark [NYSE: ARMK], the global provider of food, facilities management, and uniforms with headquarters in Philadelphia, as the Official Uniform Provider for the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015.
“Enriching and nourishing lives in communities around the world is an integral part of who we are,” said Eric Foss, Chairman, President and CEO of Aramark and a member of the Executive Leadership Cabinet for the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015. “We are proud to serve as the Official Uniform Provider for the 10,000 volunteers participating in the 2015 World Meeting of Families and Papal Visit as it allows us to fully embrace our service commitment to community whether at home or abroad. In 2015, there is no event, other than the World Meeting of Families, that will so spectacularly introduce our home, Philadelphia, to the world and we are excited to play such a significant role.”
In addition to serving as the Official Uniform Provider for the event, Aramark will also provide corporate volunteers for the events beginning Tuesday, September 22, 2015. Additional corporations have also committed volunteers, notably Campbell Soup [NYSE: CPB] Independence Blue Cross and Torcon. Several local colleges and universities have also committed volunteers for this international event, including Cabrini College, Neumann University, St. Joseph’s University and Villanova University.
“The colleges and universities within this region have a rich heritage and strong tradition of supporting major events and the World Meeting of Families is no exception,” said Rosalie Mirenda, President of Neumann University and a member of the Board of Directors for the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015. “There is a wonderful enthusiasm for Pope Francis, especially among our students, and we are excited to support opportunities for them to serve during this extraordinary moment for the city.”
Co-sponsored by the Holy See’s Pontifical Council for the Family and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the World Meeting of Families is a triennial global event that seeks to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe and highlight its intrinsic value to the good of society. This international gathering will welcome Pope Francis to the United States for the first time in his Papacy. Being held in the United States for the first time ever, the official theme for the 2015 World Meeting of Families is “Love is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive.”
For more information regarding the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia next September, please visit www.WorldMeeting2015.org. For more information regarding The Holy See’s Pontifical Council for the Family, which co-sponsors the World Meeting of Families with the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, please visit http://www.familiam.org/famiglia_eng/00002554_HOME_ENG.html. An online retail store, featuring t-shirts, hats, pins and other small mementos, is also open and can be accessed at http://wmof.myshopify.com/. You can also engage the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia on Facebook (World Meeting of Families 2015) (Encuentro Mundial de las Familias – Filadelfia 2015), Twitter (@WMF2015) (@WMF2015ES) and Instagram (WMF2015).
About World Meetings of Families
Beginning with 1994, The Year of the Family, the Pontifical Council for the Family has been responsible for organizing the World Meetings of Families in Rome (1994); Rio de Janeiro (1997); Rome (2000); Manila (2003); Valencia (2006); Mexico City (2009); Milan (2012); and now, Philadelphia (2015). Since its inception by Saint John Paul II, the World Meeting of Families has sought to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe.
Kenneth A. Gavin
Director of Communications