Last week, some of the most influential women from the Canadian judo community were in Montreal for the first ever edition of the Judo Canada Women Summit.
The participants had a chance to hear from various speakers during the two-day event. On the first day, Guylaine Dumont and Sylvain Croteau kicked off the day with a presentation on Sport’Aide, an organization supporting and guiding athletes who are victims of violence in a sporting context. “We offer many services to athletes, and we can refer to specialists working with all kinds of issues if needed. Any time an organization takes a moment to talk about these issues, we think it’s great, and it’s motivating to know other people want to do something with us to fix it. Kudos to Judo Canada for taking this initiative,” explained Sylvain Croteau, General Manager of Sport’Aide. The second speaker was Chantal Daigle, from Égale Action, who talked about the psychosocial factors of girls in sports to support their participation and advancement in sports and physical activities.
The second day started off with a conference with Catherine Naulleau, who’s been working with judokas for over 10 years, about nutrition in women athletes. Her main goal was to educate the women attending the summit and make sure they’re better equipped to deal with weight management for their athletes in the future. Her conference was followed by one about empowering women with Guylaine Demers. She made the participants think about where they want to be in two years, and make a plan on how to get there. She said, “There has been a huge improvement of women’s place in sport in the last few decades, but they’re still a lot of work to be done. Leadership abilities are something you have to work on your entire life, and in a mostly male-dominated environment like sports, it’s always a little harder for women. I want women to be assertive and know that they’re amazing, beautiful and capable of anything.” The last speaker was Roland Vidal, from Respect Group, an organization offering various training courses about respect in various areas of sports.
The first edition of the summit was well appreciated by all the attendees, who are hoping to see it become an annual event.