Judo for Peace
Since 2013, the Judo for Peace (JFP) Commission has been extremely active in different areas of the world.
Activities have been focused on three kinds of region; conflict, post-conflict and socially disordered.
Some of the projects led by the JFP Commission are purely peace projects, while in others, JFP is part of more global programmes such as the Judo Educational Journeys (JEJs) through the likes of China, Canada and Oceania.
The International Judo Federation (IJF) has a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP), whose youth leadership training camps are regularly participated in by the JFP Commission.
The JFP Commission collaborates with the other IJF Commissions involved in education and particularly with the Educational and Coaching Commission and the Judo for Children Commission.
Syrian refugee camps: Under the supervision of the IJF and led by the Turkish Judo Federation, a refugee camp programme was launched in the Turkish city of Kilis in 2015. Judo activities are proposed to young children in a refugee camp on the Syrian border. Equipment and expertise is also provided.
African Great Lake region: The JFP programme has been successfully running since 2006. Starting with 80 judoka in 2006 and three clubs in Burundi, there are today 1,500 judoka and 17 clubs in the country. The programme is also active in Rwanda and eastern Congo. A national dojo, a room or hall in which judo and other martial arts are practised, is under construction in Burundi’s capital Bujumbura aimed at developing judo across the whole region. Equipment is regularly sent to support the activities. In 2014, Burundi obtained its first medal at continental level thanks to Signoline Kanyamunesa's success at the Cadets African Championships.
Zambia: An extensive programme is running in the town of Livingstone, involving 600 children in three clubs. This programme is led by the Norwegian Judo Federation’s Judo for fred (JFF) Committee with the support of the IJF, which provides equipment and expertise.
Chad: From 2013 to 2014, the IJF supported the development of Judo for Peace activities in Chad.
Afghanistan: For many years, the JFF Committee has been supporting the development of judo in Afghanistan. The IJF has been assisting by providing equipment and it is hoped a reinforced cooperation between JFF and JFP will strengthen the programme, which focuses on street children and girls.
The JFP Commission has also been present in Algeria, Haiti, Mauritius and Tunisia to promote the values of judo among youngsters.
These values are also promoted during World Judo Tour events through the organisation of educational activities by the IJF and the host federation.
Judo clinics and demonstrations, seminars and conferences have been organised in several countries, including Azerbaijan, China, Cuba, France, Hungary, Japan, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Russia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, United States and Uzbekistan.
The JFP Commission is working on the sustainability of the ongoing programmes, which are seen as useful tools for the development of National Federations.
Cooperation with international organisations such as the United Nations fosters the promotion of judo’s values among populations which have been witnessing either armed or social conflicts.
Attracting young people to participate in judo, to learn life-long values, which can contribute to build a better society is achieved through cooperation with the other IJF Commissions.
The contribution of the private sector to support programmes with an important educational added value is currently being investigated.
IJF Gender Equity Commission
The International Judo Federation (IJF) set up its Gender Equity Commission in November 2013.
Belgium's six-time world champion Ingrid Berghmans, the dominant judoka in the 1980s, winning two world titles in the under 72 kilograms category and four in the open division, plays a prominent role on the Commission.
Having been denied the opportunity to challenge for an Olympic medal because women were not allowed to compete in the Games until Barcelona 1992, when her career was over, she is well qualified for the role.
The Commission also includes Estony Hattingh, President of the Botswana Judo Federation and African Judo Union communications director, Britain's Lisa Allan, the competition manager at London 2012 who now fulfils the same role at the IJF, and Jacqueline de Quattro, Minister of Defence and Environment of the Canton de Vaux, Switzerland's most populous Canton which includes the Olympic capital Lausanne.
De Quattro is third dan judoka herself and been involved in other IJF projects, including a camp in Swiss municipality Fiesch in 2013, when more than 200 youngsters from 30 countries were given a masterclass by several top competitors.
The Commission is completed by Jean-Luc Rouge, general secretary of the IJF and former world champion in the under 93kg division.
World Judo Day
The International Judo Federation (IJF) announced the launch of World Judo Day at the end of 2010, set up to take place every year on October 28, the birthday of judo’s founder Jigoro Kano.
World Judo Day aims to promote the values of the sport and its education system to all judo clubs and all judoka, through IJF Member Federations and with the help of the modern communication tools.
The IJF hosted the fifth edition of the annual event in 2015 with UNITY selected as the theme.
Previous themes were HONOUR in 2014, PERSEVERANCE in 2013, JUDO FOR ALL in 2012 and RESPECT in 2011 for the day which is dedicated to coaches, fans, judoka and everyone with a passion for one of the world’s most-widely practised sports.
Today, more than 20 million people practice judo around the world on a daily basis.
The IJF counts 195 National Federations and five Continental Unions as members.
World Judo Day is the world governing body’s showcase of the sport’s values and its spirit.
The IJF sees judo as an educational tool that can help people to live together and to respect one another.
The objective is to increase the number of judo players around the world and to help change people’s lives with the power of judo.
Judo for Children
The goal of Judo for Children (JFC) is to include judo in school curriculums and offer the possibility to children to discover the sport and to learn its human values.
JFC strives to fight against any kind of discrimination and segregation, promoting an educational activity that helps to build the mind and body of the younger generations.
It aims to instil the values of judo such as respect, honour, friendship, self-control, modesty, politeness and give them skills for life.
JFC is active in countries all over the world, especially in sectors where social disorders destroyed the social network and where values have been lost.
In 2016, projects have been developed in Azerbaijan, the Dominican Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Iran, Italy, Madagascar, Mexico, Palestine, Romania, Senegal and Tunisia.
The first programme was launched in The Netherlands in 2005, starting with one school and a few-dozen children.
Today, 35,000 children in 400 schools are doing the activities every year, learning the basics of judo throughout the programme.
More and more schools are providing equipment to judo teachers in order to make sure that the sport is practiced in the best possible conditions.
The IJF also looks to provide equipment and expertise, supporting the programme from an administrative point of view.
Judo for the World
In 2015, the International Judo Federation (IJF) launched a series of movies called Judo for the World (JFTW) to illustrate how judo can change the lives of young people around the globe.
Focusing on the educational dimension of the sport, the JFTW series features children and young adults as well as "big names" of the sport, whose life has been deeply impacted by judo.
Each movie, which is five to six minutes long, focuses on different characters and show them not only on the tatami but also in their daily life and environment, with their friends and relatives.
An artistic and original approach was chosen in a bid to emphasise the stories.
The movies are promoted on social media and integrated into the IJF event highlights, proposed to all television stations broadcasting judo.
All episodes are set to be brought together within one single 26-minute film.
On March 11, 2011, Japan was severely hit by a massive earthquake followed by a devastating tsunami. Four years later, JFTW featured the people of the city of Rikuzentakata, which was ripped off the map during the disaster, and discovered how it had impacted people’s life. JFTW also looked at the importance of judo in Japan, where the sport was born in 1882, through the testimonies of Olympic champion Tanimoto Ayumi and world champion Haga Ryunosuke.
Despite the economical and social situation, Cuban athletes have been winning many world and Olympic medals for decades. JFTW featured Daniel, whose dream is to go the Olympic Games one day. Living in a poor neighbourhood of Havana and being an adopted child, he has to struggle to make his dream come true. Hain is blind and deaf, but judo helped him to be integrated and accepted within his community. The movie also features Olympic and world champion Idalys Ortiz in her home village in a remote place outside of the capital.
Judo is very popular in Brazil and in the framework of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, the sport has become even more popular. Nevertheless, the country faces a deep social and economical crisis, symbolised by the numerous favelas displayed across the country. JFTW featured Raissa and as she explains: "Hate brought me to judo, love made me stay". World and Olympic medallist Flavio Canto presents a project "Reaçao", which helps young people to change their lives through judo. Putting a perspective on everything is Rafaela Silva, who was born in a favela and became the first Brazilian female world champion.
For several years, judo has helped young refugee children in the Kilis refugee camps in southern Turkey. Escaping from the terror of the civil war in Syria, they try to rebuild a safer life in a difficult and complicated situation. Deeply traumatised by the war, hundreds of children follow an extensive judo programme based on the sport's values. Nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016, Kilis and its region are facing great challenges in integrating hundreds of thousands of refugees. JFTW focused on their daily life in the camp and how judo can help them.
Three years ago, the IJF launched the concept of Judo Educational Journey (JEJ) through a certain territory. In 2016, the JEJ focused on Australia. JFTW showed the diversity of country, where judo has a strong presence and has a real impact on local communities. JFTW explained how the sport of judo can help with the education of the youth. It presents the reality and the challenges as well as the opportunities within the territory.
The African leg of the JFTW series focused on Zambia in the southern part of the continent. Over the years, judo has become the number one sport in Zambia bringing medals and honours. But the sport is also seen as an important inclusive activity that helps to overcome a society ravaged by drugs, prostitution, unemployment and climate change. Mammah is a female judo coach in Livingstone and she has already changed the life of many women and young girls such as Fillet, a young teenager who used to sell goods in the street. Andrew lives in the capital and used to be one of those children smuggling things in the streets of Lusaka. Judo put him back on tracks. Father Jude is one of the founders of judo in the region.
Judo is becoming stronger and stronger in the country. A Judo for Children project has been launched and now the sport is practiced in approximately 200 schools. JFTW focuses on that dimension of judo. Vivien comes from a poor family 350 kilometres outside of Budapest. She made the choice to come to the capital to change her life and find new opportunities through sport.