America’s Cup Launches Volunteer Programme

October 17, 2016

The Bermuda community is invited to take an active role in the 35th America’s Cup by joining the Volunteer Program, ‘First Mates’ presented by XL Catlin.

Up to 1,000 volunteers will play an integral part in welcoming the world to Bermuda in 2017 and delivering the 35th America’s Cup which starts on May 26th and runs through the end of June 2017.

Together with global [re]insurer XL Catlin, the America’s Cup Event Authority [ACEA] and America’s Cup Bermuda [ACBDA] are looking to build a team of passionate, committed and talented volunteers who will become ambassadors of the America’s Cup in Bermuda.

Volunteer Appreciation Event of Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series Bermuda

A range of versatile volunteer roles are available throughout the event, where six teams will vie for the America’s Cup, the oldest trophy in international sport.

Roles include interacting with spectators and guests throughout the venue and facilities and helping out behind the scenes in areas such as accreditation, on the water course marshalling, transportation and logistics, press operations and communications and information technology.

Whilst the motivations to volunteer will be personal to each candidate, local residents have the unique opportunity to contribute first hand to the success of this transformative event for Bermuda.

Volunteers will be at the center of the excitement, will have the opportunity to develop new skills and will gain invaluable experience and connections whilst networking with people from all over the world.

Sam Hollis, Chief Operating Officer, ACEA, says, “Volunteers are an integral part of why the America’s Cup events are successful all around the world.

“We simply could not host these events without the invaluable contributions of those who volunteer their time and talent. We look forward to welcoming the diverse team of First Mates who will make up an integral and valued part of the 35th America’s Cup.”

To prepare for the 35th America’s Cup, a volunteer drive is being launched with sessions available for the general public to learn more about volunteering during next year’s event.

The sessions will be held from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at XL Catlin’s offices in Hamilton on Monday November 7, Wednesday November 9, Tuesday November 15 and Wednesday November 16. Interested First Mates are invited to register by completing the online volunteer application form here:

Volunteers will be asked to commit an average of 120 hours over the course of the month-long event. There will be approximately 12 shifts over 30 operating days and average volunteer shifts will be 8 hours long. Preference will be given to individuals who are available to volunteer beyond the minimum shift commitment.

Mike Winfield, CEO, ACBDA, says, “On behalf of the ACBDA, I would like to encourage the people of Bermuda to apply to become a First Mate.

“There are a wide variety of positions available and being a sailing enthusiast isn’t a requirement. The First Mates will help welcome the world for the 35th America’s Cup to experience the best Bermuda has to offer and our reputation of going the extra-mile for our visitors will shine.”

Potential First Mates should be at least 18 years of age by May 1st, 2017 and available to volunteer for the duration of the event from May 26th – June 27th, 2017.

They also need to be available to participate in the mandatory volunteer orientation in mid-April 2017 and role-specific training as well as complete the Bermuda Tourism Authority’s Certified Tourism Ambassador [CTA] training.

First Mates should be friendly and approachable, enjoy helping people, reliable, have effective communication skills, a great sense of humor, enjoy working in a team environment and flexible to changing circumstances.

XL Catlin Chief Experience Officer Paul Jardine says, “We are thrilled to be the Presenting Partner of the 35th America’s Cup Volunteer Program, First Mates. We encourage as many people as possible to get involved.

“Being able to volunteer during the America’s Cup is not only an experience of a lifetime, it’s also an opportunity to showcase to the world all that Bermuda and its people have to offer.”

The first step for interested volunteer candidates is to complete the online application prior to November 30th, 2016. The information submitted on the volunteer application form helps in matching volunteers with a role best suited for their skills, experience and interests.  

For more information on the America’s Cup Volunteer Program, First Mates, presented by XL Catlin, visit here.

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Comments (4)

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  1. Hope says:

    Really great idea and I hope people turn out for it. Unfortunately I am not able to commit to 30 hours per week of volunteering for an entire month. I’m guessing most people who work fulltime won’t be able to either. Hopefully there are lots of people out there who can!!

  2. Thinker says:

    Volunteer??? Are you serious???

    For that many hours – it’s a job and you WOULD HAVE TO PAY ME!!!

    • Still Crazy After All These Years says:

      Come on, AC only has 77 million, how could they pay a cent from that pittance?

  3. ACBDA Communications says:

    While it sounds like a lot, the amount of hours and shifts will be thoroughly explained at the information sessions and will be flexible. We encourage the public to attend these sessions to find out more about jumping on board. Click here to learn more: