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Olympics athletes receive English survival handbook

The Olympic Games are now in full swing and the British Council is doing its bit to ensure the smooth running of the Games by providing every athlete with an English language survival handbook. It has also produced a website, English for the Games, which enables practice built around sporting themes.

An extract from the front cover of the guidebook given to all athletesAn extract from the front cover of the guidebook given to all athletes

The translations will also help English-speaking competitors communicate with their fellow athletes

The English for the Games handbook was included in athletes’ gift bags, and features key English vocabulary for all London 2012 sports, along with English translations of useful day-to-day phrases from Arabic, French, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

The cultural relations body points out that the translations will also help English-speaking competitors communicate with their fellow athletes in other languages.

As well as going to the athletes, the book will be available to English learners around the world through the British Council’s global network of teaching centres and online.

“The English language is one of our greatest assets”

Mark Robson, Director of English at the British Council, said: “The English language is one of our greatest assets, building trust for the UK, bringing billions of pounds into our economy and creating life-changing opportunities for people across the globe. With the world coming to London for the 2012 Games, this is the perfect opportunity to use English to build some great new relationships, which will last well beyond the Closing Ceremonies.”

The handbook and website (which also covers Olympic history and offers interactive exercises) are part of the British Council’s extensive programme for the 2012 Games across English, education and the arts.

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