2022.04.14 Rok Rakun
Historical moment for inclusion in sport.

Today, the Judo Club Sokol in Ljubljana hosted a presentation of inclusive judo, attended by the Minister of Education, Science and Sport, Prof. Dr. Simona Kustec, the Minister of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, Janez Cigler Kralj, and the President of the Slovenian Judo Federation, mag. Lovrencij Galuf. During the presentation of the implementation and progress of the work of inclusive judo, the guests signed a tripartite agreement between the Judo Federation of Slovenia and the two ministries, which aims at mutual cooperation in the field of inclusion and advocacy for wider implementation of the model of inclusion in sport in Slovenia.

To achieve this goal, the two ministries will initiate the establishment of an inter-ministerial working group on the inclusion of vulnerable groups in Slovenian sport. The signatories will also make proposals to promote the process of inclusion of vulnerable groups in a meaningful and targeted way, both in the Slovenian Judo Federation and in Slovenian sport in general. In this way, the parties to the Agreement will help society to achieve the standards and values of an inclusive, intergenerationally connected society.

"With this action today, we are opening the heart of our society, which must be equal for all. You are showing this by what you are doing, and today we, as a country, will support and help your efforts with our commitment. By doing so, you will have no excuses for not being the best in the world. Judo is a sport that is very popular and very successful in Slovenia. Slovenian judo players have won many medals, including 6 Olympic medals. I wish you every success and sporting prowess. I give you my word that our Ministry will make sure that you will have the best possible conditions for training and achieving the highest results."

Minister of Education, Science and Sport, Prof. Dr. Simona Kustec

"I am honoured and grateful that our Ministry often meets with the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport, especially in the area of inclusion of vulnerable groups in society and in sport. The Secretary of State and I travel around the country a lot, visiting care work centres and training, work and protection centres and meeting enthusiastic sportspeople. The Judo Federation of Slovenia, by practising inclusive judo, is an example that reflects our vision of inclusion in society. Therefore, it is not necessary to create special federations, but it is our duty to include vulnerable groups wherever possible and as far as possible in ordinary life. I am grateful for all your vision to do what comes naturally. You are an example to all of us through sport, and that is how you reach all of our hearts. Let us continue to be promoters together of being stronger together."

Minister for Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, Janez Cigler Kralj

"This is a historic moment in the development of inclusion in Slovenian sport and recognition of 30 years of work in the field of inclusion in the Slovenian Judo Federation. For more than 25 years, Slovenian judo clubs united in the Slovenian Judo Federation have been caring for vulnerable groups, which we have been reintegrating back into the community through the practice of judo, in addition to the majority of the included population of all age and social categories. These groups include socially disadvantaged children, blind and visually impaired persons, deaf and hard of hearing persons, persons with various physical disabilities, persons with intellectual disabilities, persons with long-term illnesses (e.g. autistic spectrum disorders), persons with combined disabilities, persons with mental health problems, and elderly persons. This agreement is the basis for a solid foundation and further systemic work. The signing of the agreement allows us to continue our work within a systemic framework, which is essential for all Slovenian sport."

President of the Judo Federation of Slovenia, mag. Lovrencij Galuf