The French Sports Ministry is hoping to increase volunteer numbers prior to Paris 2024 ©Getty Images

The French Ministry of Sports is to stage a series of meetings as it looks to increase interest in volunteering prior to the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Sports clubs in France are said to still be recovering from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and have reportedly seen thousands of volunteers leave and not return.

In a survey conducted by the Centre for Sports Law and Economics (CDES), 53 per cent of "sports and institutional stakeholders" placed the lack of people wanting to volunteer as their primary concern.

"Some actors think that a new legal form could be part of the answers to be provided," read a CDES statement.

"But it seems that it is more the collective project and the redefinition of a base of common values that must be put back at the centre of concerns in order to strengthen the attractiveness of associative commitment in the coming years".

Minister of Sports and the Olympic and Paralympic Games Amélie Oudéa-Castéra organised a workshop at the Economic, Social and Environmental Council with three other Government officials.

Secretary of State for the Social and Solidarity Economy Marlène Schiappa, Minister for Education and Vocational Training Carole Grandjean and State Secretary for Youth Sarah El Haïry joined her.

Amélie Oudéa-Castéra is seeking to increase the number of women volunteering in sport ©Getty Images
Amélie Oudéa-Castéra is seeking to increase the number of women volunteering in sport ©Getty Images

The aim was to develop different paths for the return of volunteers.

The first was "the recognition and enhancement of the skills of sports volunteers" while another aimed to "feminise volunteering".

The Ministry of Sports has supported the French National Olympic and Sports Committee's goal to have 3,000 female volunteers registered by 2028.

Sport is the second most popular area for volunteering in France after social development according to the Ministry of Sports.

Currently 3.5 million volunteers are involved with 360,000 sporting associations in France, which includes 160,000 federated clubs.

More than 45,000 volunteers are expected to participate at Paris 2024, with 30,000 set to be deployed in the Olympics from July 26 to August 11, and 15,000 in the Paralympics from August 28 to September 8.

The application process is set to open in March 2023.