The Vanuatu Judo Federation is pleased and honored to welcome for a month Elisabeth Willeboordse, a former high-level judoka from the Netherlands. She was a medalist at the European Championships, the World Championships and in 2008 she won the bronze medal at the Beijing Olympics in the under 63 kg category.
Following her meeting with Nazario Fiakaifonu and Maxence Cugola at the Sergei training camp in Switzerland last September, the Dutch champion, amazed by our judokas’ spirit, decided to travel to the Pacific to discover our culture and share her sports expertise with Ni- Vanuatu judokas.
Since her arrival in Vila, she has offered her experience as a top athlete to our children, during training on Wednesdays and Fridays at Korman 2, along with Florence Daoleuang, national technical director and judo teacher. Elisabeth additionally offers the benefits of her experience to teenagers, adults and the national judo team. Tireless despite a busy schedule, she also attends the Ju Jitsu classes on Wednesday evenings with Sensei Philippe Gardais, always happy to share and learn from other disciplines despite her own achievements.
On Saturday, April 28th, along with our former Olympian Joe Mahit, who participated in the Rio 2016 Olympics and accompanied by Nicolas Monvoisin, the Judo Federation President, she went to Teouma Valley. They all trained 20 children who have been practicing judo with Joe since last year. Elizabeth showed her Olympic medal to the admiring young crowd. This initiative allowed our judokas to discover her experience not only as a sportswoman but also as an international athlete, an inspiring moment for the youth!
Elizabeth, even outside the tatami, takes full advantage of her stay in Vanuatu: between diving, lunches at the local market and the discovery of Efate, she is delighted by the country.
A big thank you to Breakas Resort, Nasama Resort, Warwick Le Lagon Resort, Coconut Palms resort, Société de Services Pétroliers, Esqal, Guard Island Security and Fonu Construction, who all contributed to offering the best possible stay to Elisabeth.