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Meet the Expo volunteer with 192 country pavilion stamps on his vest

This Expo volunteer has 192 country stamps to flaunt on his vest.

Arshad Junaid’s ‘wow’ story involves stamps and the biggest exhibition in the world at this moment. 

If you visit the Expo 2020 Dubai, you just might catch him educating visitors about COVID-19 guidelines, exercising crowd control and performing various other tasks. He is hard to miss, all thanks to his unique attire.

The 29-year-old Indian wakes up every morning – Sunday through Thursday – and heads to the Expo, where he works at the Alif Pavilion as a volunteer and a member of the Country Pavilion and Exhibition Operations Team. 

As per the rules, he wears his volunteer vest, a uniform that helps to distinguish him from the visitors so they can spot him easily. But his vest isn’t quite like the others. It’s covered with the stamps of every country pavilion in the Expo. 

That’s right. Every single one. That’s 192 pavilions. 

“It wasn’t easy for me,” said Junaid. “I had 10 days of shifts for volunteering work so I had to go before my shift started and after it ended to get these stamps.”

Junaid’s interesting quest began from an announcement made to his team about their uniforms. They could keep the vest, they were told, as a memory of this bit of history that they were a part of. 

He decided he wanted to preserve as much of this experience as he could and set off to collect the stamps, the only souvenirs from the pavilions which you can get for free.  

Junaid’s feat has garnered him much attention, for all the right reasons. 

“The members of the country pavilions praised me a lot and told me this was a good idea,” said Junaid, adding that he was even lauded by the Dubai Police on site for taking on such a challenge. 

Junaid’s labour of love is a wonderful example of how an opportunity like this can be taken and made into something incredibly personal. The effort paid off and now he has a sweet story to tell for many years to come!

An avid reader and writer, Manaal is known for her passion for telling stories. This passion results in her reading everywhere, on the metro, bus, and even in her dreams. In the rare instance, she isn't absorbed in a book, she can be found cuddling with cats, sleeping, and collecting an obscene amount of shoes.

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