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Shining First Stars — Meet Leyli Mammetniyazova

24 August, 2017 (17:31)
Tags: Volunteers

The Ashgabat 2017 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games will be a sister act for two young Turkmen women who are going through their final preparations to welcome the best athletes from across Asia and Oceania next month.

Sisters Leyli and Aylar Mammetniyazova have both signed up as First Stars, the 8,000-strong volunteer workforce who will be the driving force behind the Games from 17–27 September.

Leyli, a second year student at the Turkmen State Institute of Economics and Management, will be working in Venue Management as a team leader at the Main Indoor Arena where all the Wrestling events will take place.

Her older sister, Aylar, has also stepped forward as one of the tireless First Stars who are all going through extensive training to ensure the Games run smoothly.

“Aylar is working with VIPs in Protocol,” said Leyli. “We have different responsibilities but we talk about our interaction with other volunteers and the different situations that we encounter.

“My sister is more communicative than I am so I learn from her. We learn a lot from each other.”

Leyli says that what she has learned through volunteering has helped her in other parts of her life too.

“I have three sisters and I am the second oldest,” she said. “I think I am more understanding now when it comes to how they behave.”

The 18-year-old management student chose to work in Venue Management and is relishing the challenge.

“We are responsible for everything that happens in the venue, including things like when people get sick or they have transportation problems.

“It's so busy that I can't even relax because I'm always working. We always have something to do. I like to resolve issues. I think I am really good at that.”

Like many of her colleagues, Leyli has one thing on her mind as the days and hours tick down towards the event.

“I can’t wait for the Opening Ceremony, after which everything will start and that's when it will get interesting,” she said.

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