The Machu Picchu lounge of the Novotel Hotel in San Isidro, Lima was the venue and attracted the Chair of the Gender Equity Commission of the Pan American Judo Confederation (CPJ), Daima Beltrán (CUB). CPJ President Carlos Zegarra Presser offered an inclusive welcome speech, "I thank and congratulate my sister, friend and teacher Daima Beltrán for making this possible and for sharing life stories that manage to impact and motivate women to gain more spaces of opportunity based on their professional capacity.” These were powerful opening words, setting the tone for an honest and necessary discussion.
One of the main speakers, who really had an impact on attendees by speaking freely about her experiences and perseverance and the constant struggle to overcome the barriers of Peruvian society, including issues in l sports leadership, was the trailblazing President of the Peruvian Judo Sports Federation, Maria Martinez.
Many important points were raised and explored, all evidenced from real-world experience and first-hand testimony, including contributions from Daima Beltrán, Karen Artavia (Costa Rica), secretary of the CPJ Gender Equality Commission, María Martínez (Peru), president of the FDPJ, Johanna Orozco (Colombia) and the Sports Manager of FECOLJUDO, Kimberlie Rivera (Peru).
All those present agreed that often, in Peru and further afield, women are given opportunities at political, economic and social levels, in positions where there is no significant space for decision and prominence. The seminar is just one step among many which still need to be taken towards equilibrium but the CPJ and Peru is determined to force progress, consistently being the change they wish to see.
(Photos and some content courtesy of Judo Peru)