Paris 2024 launches “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification to the world from Tokyo
With the support of France’s Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, the Organising Committee for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games has awarded “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification to the French Embassy in Japan. The award was made a few days before the first of France’s local and regional authorities receive the certification, which is designed to trigger initiatives focusing on the three major dimensions of the Paris 2024 Games: celebration, legacy and engagement. Organised by the French Embassy in Japan, the launch day featured a series of actions that demonstrated how embassies can engage in support of sport and Olympism.
Paris 2024, represented by its general manager, Etienne Thobois, and the French Embassy, represented by the country’s ambassador to Japan, Laurent Pic, launched the first international “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification at a sports-themed day. Also in attendance at the launch were Laurence Fischer, a French ambassador for sport, and Lucie Décosse, a former Olympic judo champion who will be coaching France’s women’s team at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Three events showcasing the three dimensions of the certification were organised
- A morning jog with embassy staff and members of the local French community (to promote sport and foster a sense of togetherness around sport and its values), involving a discussion about the Paris 2024 project.
- A meet and greet with the athletes and students from the Lycée Français International de Tokyo, and a judo masterclass with Lucie Décosse.
- A visit to Japanese fencers preparing for the Paris 2024 Games and coached by the former French fencer Franck Boidin, an Olympic medallist at Atlanta 1996.
The promotion of an entire diplomatic network
With the services of France’s diplomatic network having been engaged to help prepare the bid, Paris 2024 is now looking to build on that dynamic and promote diplomatic missions by giving them the opportunity to acquire “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification. The ultimate aim in doing so is to rally the nearly two million French people living overseas in support of the Games. Initially destined for local and regional authorities looking to commit to the Olympic and Paralympic adventure beyond the Paris Games, the certification is designed to involve people in all the excitement of sport and the Games, to make sport a more integral part of French people’s everyday lives, and to drive and grow the Paris 2024 community. The certification will become available globally following the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
What is “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification?
Launched this year, “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification aims to contribute to the success of the Paris 2024 Games and to ensure its positive and lasting effects are shared with the entire French population.
Paris 2024 has created certification that is unique in the history of the Games. It is aimed at all regional and local authorities (towns, intercommunalities, cities, districts and regions) and members of the sporting movement (federations, sports clubs) looking to support the dynamic of the Games. Their aims in offering this support are to ensure sport plays more of a central role in the everyday lives of French people, by organising events that allow people to share in the excitement of sport, by promoting the role of sport, and developing sport for all. The international launch of the certification will enable millions of French people around the world to engage with the initiative through all the country’s embassies.
In announcing the international launch of “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification in Tokyo and its award to the French Embassy in Japan, Paris 2024 is moving forward with its plans to open up the Olympic and Paralympic adventure to as many people as possible. The French Embassy in Japan, the country where the next Olympic and Paralympic Games will be held, wholeheartedly shares this objective and is committed to supporting Olympism and its values on a daily basis.
And on to Tokyo in 2020
Following the launch day, “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification will come to life in Japan in early 2020 thanks to a series of initiatives undertaken by the French Embassy with the support of Paris 2024. These include:
- The launch of a competition that will see a member of the French community in Japan take part in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games torch relay;
- The roll-out of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Week, the national theme of which will be cross-cultural interaction, with a specific focus on Japan;
- Engaging the French and French-speaking communities through a number of competitions in Japan involving French athletes (e.g. the Women’s Handball World Championship in Japan in late 2019);
- Mass participation in sports competitions organised in the various districts of Tokyo and by other authorities and bodies in Japan (e.g. the Minato Ku half marathon);
- The organisation of regular events bringing together active “Terre de Jeux 2024” members and sportspeople and sports stakeholders visiting Japan.
Laurent Pic, French ambassador to Japan: “It is an honour to receive “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification because Japan has just hosted the Rugby World Cup and is preparing to organise the Olympic and Paralympic Games next summer, which is what France will itself be doing in 2023 and 2024 respectively. We see the award of “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification as entirely natural, as it is founded on three bedrocks: celebration, engagement and legacy. In our awareness of the challenges ahead, we are placing a very special emphasis on the sporting dimension of our activities, and will do so, for example, in our economic relations, our cooperation with universities and the scientific community, in our cultural programme, and also in the area of decentralised cooperation. We also aim to engage with our community in Japan and ensure that it actively contributes to the success of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo, first of all, and then in Paris. It is an exciting programme that will encompass all our diplomatic activities. Finally, the Olympic and Paralympic Games are much more than just sporting events. They are a force for social inclusion, both in terms of gender equality and accessibility for people with disabilities. I am convinced that a very large number of posts in our diplomatic network will want to be a part of this process and gain “Terre de Jeux” certification for themselves.”
Etienne Thobois, Paris 2024 General Manager: “It is a real pleasure to be here in Japan to launch the certification we call “Terre de Jeux 2024” in Tokyo. One of the challenges for us is to engage with people, to excite them, and not just the spectators who will be fortunate enough to be in the stadiums. Our ambition with “Terre de Jeux 2024” is to engage French people across the country and abroad, where nearly two million of them live. We want to share the positive energy of the Games with as many people as possible and we want sport to play a more prominent part in their lives. The Games are an amazing event, and we want to make the most of these opportunities to take it out to as many people as possible. I have to say that the partnership with the French Embassy in Japan is going extremely well, especially in relation to Tokyo 2020. We are delighted that the first event in the roll-out of “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification has taken place in Tokyo. It has made this unprecedented and original initiative a reality, an initiative that France is especially happy to be driving forward. My hope is that this form of cooperation, which will be overseen by Paris 2024, will bring together a large number of France’s diplomatic mission overseas. “Terre de Jeux 2024” seeks to contribute to the success of the Paris 2024 Games and to ensure its positive effects are shared across the whole of France. I am delighted that this partnership with the French Embassy in Tokyo also marks the start of a shared history between Paris 2024 and the diplomatic network, one of the bedrocks of this certification.”
Lucie Décosse, former Olympic judo champion and coach of France’s women’s team: “I have fought in Japan dozens of times and I know the country well. In judo, the Japanese masters are the greatest and I have taken on the Japanese several times here. I am delighted to be back in Tokyo to support the international development of “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification. The opportunities I have had to speak to different people on this visit have been very moving for me. I am thinking in particular of the children of the Lycée Français International de Tokyo and the group of young judokas to whom I gave a masterclass. These gatherings all help contribute to the legacy of the Games.”
Laurence Fischer, former karate world champion and a French ambassador for sport: “I am very proud to be here today for the launch of “Terre de Jeux 2024” certification. The diplomatic network has been giving its support to the Paris 2024 bid for many years now and this is a way of continuing that partnership. In a wider sense, sport embodies values. It is about sticking to your task, discipline and exerting yourself, values that I believe need to be shared in schools, universities and embassies and with people of all ages and from all walks of life. Paris 2024 is a unique and historic opportunity to engage all French people in the questions of legacy and engagement. The public authorities face a major challenge in generating enthusiasm and providing the answers that sport needs. France is truly investing in the Paris 2024 Games and there is a genuine sense of engagement. It has been an excellent launch and we now have the tools we need to roll out “Terre de Jeux 2024” around the world, which bodes extremely well for the future.”