Saturday, August 20, 2011
WYD 2011 Madrid 16th - 21st August Official Website
The official numbers for World Youth Day 2011 in Madrid have been released. Around 2 million people participated in the event, ranking Madrid as the third most attended World Youth Day. The events with the most people were in Manila, in the Philipines in 1995 and Rome in 2000.
This year there were 193 nations represented. The countries with the most particpants were Italy, Spain, and France.
Church organizers say the event cost around 50 million euros, close to 72 million dollars. This came from the registration fee paid by the participants as well as donations from corporate sponsors.
To help with crowd control, over 18,000 police and civil servants were present. As well as 30,000 volunteers, placed throughout the city, who were handing out bottles of water.
Also 14,000 priests and 800 bishops concelebrated the closing Mass with Benedict XVI in the Cuatro Vientos Aerodrome. This was the size of 48 soccer fields.
The event also accredited more than 5,000 journalists from around the world to cover the twenty-sixth World Youth Day, the third such event presided over by Benedict XVI.
Source: Rome Reports
According to the organizing committee of World Youth Day in Madrid, 50 million euros were spent in organizing the event. This is around 72 million dollars. Seventy percent was funded by the pilgrims themselves and the other thirty percent by the sponsoring companies. The budget was approximately 20% lower than the last World Youth Day in Sydney.
The two million pilgrims that came to Madrid gave a boost to the city's economy of 230 million dollars according to estimates by the Confederation of Employers of Madrid.
In dining costs alone, around 32 million was spent according to Juan José Blardony, the director general of Madrid's hospitality association.
Hotels reported an occupancy level of 70%, which is usually around 40% in August.
The City Council estimates the event brought the Spanish capital 2% of country's revenue for the entire year.
The money generated from World Youth Day was three times larger than that brought by the Champions League final in 2010, which was around 70 million dollars.
The organizers of World Youth Day originally believed the event would only bring in 140 million dollars, much lower than the 230 million they now calculate. These numbers will now be checked again my an external auditor to give the final numbers.
Source: Rome Reports
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