Kano Omata was one of the young participants, representing Educational Foundation of Kokushikan, that took part in our Erasmus+ Sport funded training course in Tokyo, Japan.
My name is Kano Omata and I am a former artistic swimmer. I was a member of the junior national team for three and the part of the national team for five years. I won a bronze medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics and retired as an athlete in 2020.
I currently work for the Kokushikan University in public relations and coach club teams and university clubs. Professor Junko Tahara approached me to present this training programme and I decided to participate because I thought it would be a great opportunity to learn about social contribution through sport from a global perspective.
This training course has further enhanced the value of sport in my mind because the programmes taught me to see and think about things in human, educational and cultural terms through sport as a tool.
The experience of bringing together people of different ages, countries of origin, specialised sports and backgrounds to exchange ideas on how sport can contribute to society is not something that everyone can do.
First of all, I would like to thank you for allowing me to participate in this training.
The training also included time for group discussions, where we discussed various other topics, such as the definition of the SDGs, social contribution initiatives by mega sporting events, and the impact of the Youth Olympic Games on society.
The time spent proposing initiatives and strategies to approach the SDGs on a country-by-country and competition-by-competition basis and sharing ideas with each other was very stimulating. I was impressed by the way they discussed things with respect for each other, even amidst the various opinions expressed, and felt that the impact of sport on society can have a significant impact on the human side of things as well.
I thought about how I could apply what I had learnt from this experience in my own life.
Currently, I sometimes give lectures at primary and secondary schools in order to expand the possibilities of artistic swimming and to tell children what I have learnt through sport. I feel it is my mission to pass on what I have learnt from this training to the children and society in Japan, and to promote SDGs activities with the tool of sport while involving a large number of people.
It may be difficult for our new efforts to change something with a goal to produce immediate results. However, I know that each small change can lead to big results. Because I have learnt that in my previous experience of competing.
Together with the knowledge and ideas I have learnt from this training, I would like to spend my time in the future developing my existing activities and contributing to society through new activities. First of all, I will start with small steps. I will continue to take those small steps as I go along.
Finally, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to participate and learn from such a valuable workshop.
I was happy to meet ENGSO Youth, University of Physical Education from Hungary, Senegal Olympic and Sports Committee, and Sport and Citizenship and to spend time with you all. Thank you all for your lots of support.
Kokushikan University employees