By Eliane Luthi Poirier, NOC Relations Coordinator, Singapore Youth Olympic Games Organising Committee

Hi Everyone!

On Friday, 7 May 2010, Singapore will be celebrating the 99-day countdown to the first-ever Youth Olympic Games.

It’s a huge milestone for us! We’ve come such a long way since Singapore was voted the host city of these Games in February 2008. With just two and half years to prepare the inaugural edition, we’ve been racing to live up to this monumental challenge.

As a coordinator for NOC Relations, my duty within the Organising Committee is to provide National Olympic Committees (NOCs) with all the information they need to prepare their delegations for Singapore 2010. I’m the first point of contact for a group of fourteen European NOCs – one of which is the NOC of Switzerland, my home country.

Though each NOC has different concerns, our entire NOC Relations team receives queries from the NOCs on a daily basis. To me, that’s a clear sign of interest in and support for the first Youth Olympic Games.

The support from the NOCs was also evident when we received the participation from 198 of them (out of 205) during the Chef de Mission Seminar held here in Singapore earlier this year in March. The Chef de Mission heads the delegation coming from each NOC. In the comprehensive programme we had for them, it included a tour of Singapore 2010 venues and a series of plenary sessions; not forgetting the wonderful opening dinner that was graced by the IOC President, Dr Jacques Rogge.

At the event on Friday, we will be welcoming on board the thousands of volunteers – an important part of the backbone of Singapore 2010.

Some will be working alongside my team as NOC Assistants. They’ll help the Chefs de Mission in their daily activities from 14 – 26 August. Think we’re lucky to be working with such dedicated and enthusiastic youth on this project.

This Friday’s event will be held at *SCAPE, also the venue for 3-on-3 basketball. It’s a chance for us to celebrate with these volunteers, and an excellent opportunity for us to take a break and have some fun together. If you’re there, look out for the fashion show where volunteers will be “modeling” their Games-time uniforms. If you can’t join us, do remember to check out the shots and videos that we will be uploading on our Games website – after the event.

With only 99 days, these Games are almost at our doorstep. We’re truly excited to welcome the world once again to Singapore to experience one of the greatest sporting events in history!