Jemima Montag
オーストラリア /Australia
2009年こども大使 / JA 2009
オリンピック出場選手 / Olympian
1. Please introduce yourself briefly.
ジェミマ モンタグ – オリンピック出場選手で公衆衛生学を学ぶ医学生です。時間があるときには、料理やピアノ、そして美しいオーストラリアの景観を楽しめるハイキングやキャンプをすることが大好きです。
My name is Jemima Montag – I am an Olympian and a medical student with special interest in public health. In my spare time I love cooking, playing the piano, and hiking or camping in the beautiful Australian landscape.
2. What are your memories of Fukuoka when you participated APCC as a Junior Ambassador?
私は2009年にAPCCのこども大使になるという素敵な機会をもらいました。最初の週、オーストラリア団はスリランカ団のこども大使達と一緒に2段ベッドの部屋で宿泊し、私達はすぐに仲良くなりました。一緒に折り紙の鶴の折り方を学び、お箸の使い方も学んでお醤油をたっぷりかけたご飯を食べました。またスポーツ大会があり、私が取り組んでいる競歩のスキルを他のこども大使に披露したことを覚えています。2週目は新型インフルエンザの影響でホームステイをすることは叶いませんでしたが、日中はホストファミリーと過ごすことができました。ホストファザーは福岡の印象的な博物館に連れていってくれました。夜ご飯ではおいしい日本食を “お父さん”や“おばあさん”など、ホストファミリーと一緒に食べました。
I had the wonderful opportunity to be a Junior Ambassador at the APCC in 2009. During our first week the Australian girls shared a bunk room with the Sri Lankan girls and we quickly became friends. We learnt how to fold origami cranes and to use chopsticks for the delicious sticky rice which I enjoyed with lots of soy sauce. There was an amazing sports day where I remember showing the other Jas my racewalking skills. In the second week, we couldn’t stay with our host families because of the Swine Flu – but we did get to spend the daytime with them. My host father took me to some impressive museums in Fukuoka, and we had a delicious Japanese dinner with their otousan and obaasan.
3. What made you to choose to be a professional athlete?
As a child, I focused on just enjoying sport and making friends without too much pressure to become a professional. Once I finished high school, my family and I were on a holiday in Japan. My sister pointed out that in 4 years’ time, the Olympic Whilst Games would be in Tokyo, and that it would be amazing if I participated so that the family could return to Japan. Whilst this goal seemed impossible and scary, I loved the feeling of working towards something and developing the skills of resilience, teamwork, and dedication along the way.
4. Do you think your experience at APCC had any impact on your life afterwards?
The most significant impact of the APCC for me was becoming more open-minded. It was amazing at such a young age to interact with Junior Ambassadors from all over the world – people who lead different lives, with different beliefs, and some similarities. We all exchanged business cards at the time and 12 years later I am still in touch with the Sri Lankan women I shared a room with in Fukuoka. A few weeks ago, we had a Zoom call cooking lesson where they showed me how to make some traditional Sri Lankan dinner recipes. This is the power of the APCC for me.
5. APCC officials and Japanese volunteers also cheered for you at the Tokyo Olympics! Could you please tell us what your Olympic experience was like?
The Tokyo Olympics were a dream come true! Despite everything that was going on in the world, Japan did such a great job at organizing and executing the games. My race was held in Sapporo due to the heat, so we stayed in a small hotel and had the opportunity to eat traditional Japanese food which was the perfect way to prepare for the competition. My goal was to finish in the top 10 and I ended up with 6th place which was very exciting! After our competition we flew to Tokyo and spent two nights in the Olympic village. I loved creating bento boxes at the casual dining hall and buying presents for my family at the merchandise center. The only sad aspect of these games was that our families could not travel from Australia to be there, but I am hopeful that they will come to the Paris 2024 Olympics.
6. Is there anything you would like to say to Smile Supporters (APCC donors)? What would you like to tell people who are thinking of donating or volunteering at APCC?
I believe that the APCC is such an important way for children from different walks of life to come together and develop open minds, tolerance, and respect. If there is one thing that will help us work towards world peace, it is this.