Kildare volunteer for London Olympics

A Kildare teacher is heading off to London this week to act as a volunteer helper at the Olympics.

A Kildare teacher is heading off to London this week to act as a volunteer helper at the Olympics.

Kevin Carey, from Oldtown Mill in Celbridge, took advantage of his summer break to volunteer his services.Kevin, one of the drivers of the national project to improve the mathematical abilities of Irish students, applied for the unpaid role to the London games organising committee nearly two years ago.

Last January, he learned he had been accepted as a “mobility assistant,” a role which will involved aid people with various disabilities to see the games at the various centres.

Kevin, who lives with his wife and two children, was acknowledged for his services to maths education in 2011when he won the Intel Educator of Excellence award at the Young Scientist exhibition.

A graduate of NUI Galway, and a teacher at Colaiste Phadraig in Lucan, he was operations manager at the Simmonscourt extension in Ballsbridge during the 2003 Special Olympics here.

“It will be my first time every at an Olympics,” said the Sligo native, who now teaches maths, chemistry and science at all secondary levels.

He was nearly not being accepted for the Olympic role. “At first I was told I had not been accepted. I was disappointed and checked and they told me it was a mistake.”

A Celbridge resident since 2003, he has been impressed so far with the organisation of the London games. “Whatever about anything else, they are so professional in training. They are taking it very seriously,” said Kevin, who added he will take part in a “dry run” involving bringing 60,000 into the stadium tomorrow, 25 July, in preparation for Friday’s opening.

On the security front, he said it will take a volunteer around half an hour to get through the various checks at the various venues, and spectators will wait longer. “It is like airport security,” he said.

Kevin has already flown to London for a week’s training and will leave for London tomorrow to serve for ten of the fourteen days.

He will volunteer in shifts – 06.00-14.00 some days and 14.00-23.00 other days.

The games organisters will look after transport and meal costs and provide around €150 of sporting gear which will serve as his uniform for the week.

Accommodation wise he will stay with an aunt in Woodford four stops from the main stadium where he will work.

- Henry Bauress