IJF Logistics Manager Louisa Galea has been in role for the last ten years and during that time has seen a sincere evolution in the way communications are managed between delegations and organisers. Hers is not an easy job but with a team in place, working in different departments, systems are continuing to evolve in the right way.

At the Odivelas World Judo Championships Juniors, Louisa is working closely with a new member of the IJF team, world medallist Hedvig Karakas, who is working in ‘delegation services’ in Portugal. Both have experienced a positive approach to problem-solving. Louisa said, “In general we are seeing a lot of improvement with the delegations and their organisaton and also with ethics. From the logistics perspective there are always hurdles to jump but we are really feeling a huge improvement in the application of judo values when teams are communicating with us.

Louisa in Odivelas with IJF referee Katalin Fridrich

The outlines are being read and respected and so this has been one of the best events for us, from our perspective. We used to see a real difference between the junior coaches and those working at IJF Tour level but things are getting much closer now so we only have good things to say.

In my ten years in this role, this period is definitely the most positive and I am sure it will continue to go in this direction. We are looking forward to receiving more feedback from coaches as we can only improve together. Teamwork is really important in order to provide the best conditions for the athletes and coaches to do their best work. We are here to facilitate performance. We are in constant contact with the IJF Athletes’ Commission too and they also help us to organise these events in the best way possible for the athletes."

The IJF Athletes' Commission at the 2023 IOC Athlete Forum in Lausanne.

Hedvig has only been with the team since May of this year but has a similar outlook, “The coaches seem pretty satisfied with the preparations we have made for them. Of course there are always small problems to solve, this is normal. Every competition begins with ironing out logistical issues, especially when we are having to manage local holidays and other location-specific circumstances but everyone understands that by working together we can always find solutions. Requests arrive politely and I feel our work is valued. We have received a lot of feedback and I think the relationships are really positive.”

Hedvig Karakas in Portugal.

The overall picture is that communication has been key to the solidifying of these positive working practices. So, thank you too the coaches and delegations for working so hard at this, showing their athletes how to work with us and how to manage a high-level sports career behind the scenes. This helps us all to future-proof our events and create environments that encourage the best judo possible.

Thank you to the coaches for their positivity and teamwork.
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