For over two decades, Jadir Taekwondo Association (AJTKD) is a non-profit organization that has been helping children and youth overcome adversities and reach their full potential, through the power of sport. The Jadir Taekwondo Association is committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, by promoting social inclusion, peace building, good health and well-being, gender equality, and environmental education. This non-profit was established by the Former Head Coach, who is a Taekwondo master and Head Coach of the National Team. The Former Head Coach Jadir was born and raised in the suburbs of Rio and is now empowered towards empowering the lives of young people through Taekwondo. AJTKD was founded in Madureira, the neighborhood where Former Head Coach Jadir was born and raised. He aimed to expand the Association’s service capacity and the Community Taekwondo project created more access to the sport. Additionally, psychological and educational support was provided for families and children in need.
In 2009, at the request of Grand Master Yong Min Kim, AJTKD Master Paulo Rocha, and Grand Master Jadir developed the Taekwondo in Schools project. Thus, Taekwondo was included in an educational program by the Federal Government of Brazil called Mais Educação, attracting over 1,000 schools throughout the country. In 2011, Former Master Jadir was invited by CBTKD to lead the National Technical Coordination. Paulo Eduardo Rocha, a member of AJTKD since its foundation, and Danilo Malafaia, administrative director of AJTKD, took over the technical management of the team along with Jadir. In addition to the Association, Jadir coordinated the Rio de Janeiro Federation’s technical department, which yielded good results for Taekwondo in the State. In 2014, a project arose to prepare the Brazilian team for the World Youth Taekwondo Championship and the Youth Olympic Games. Through this project, youth athletes were sent to a training camp in South Korea and China. This project resulted in a gold medal in the World Youth Championships and the Youth Olympic Games.
From 2011 to 2015, under Jadir’s coordination, Brazil earned over 160 medals in international events.
Recalling the early memories of his life, Former Master Jadir says, “After talking to a gentleman who owned a football school, my father said he was going to take me there. There it became evident that I did not identify with football.” He further says, “I was a very sick boy, but I was passionate about fighting because at that time we were very influenced by Bruce Lee’s films, the David Carradine series, Kung Fu…”
In 2015, the Former Head Coach decided to end his cycle in the Confederation and fully dedicate himself to the Jadir Taekwondo Association. It was a moment of restructuring, with new projects, new students, and new volunteers working in Brazil and abroad. Master Jadir spoke about his life experience, how taekwondo helped him to overcome difficult times and how this martial art inspired him to help others. He explained that sport is essential when it comes to his work with children from underserved areas of Brazil. Former Head Coach proudly speaks of his legacy: “We have won many national and international awards, but the greatest achievement was having made it possible for more than 7,000 children and youth to have access to sport, to have the same opportunity we had.”
- Eman Khalid is a writer, journalist, storyteller, researcher, and media professional. She aspires to make a difference in the world through her love for weaving words. Her writings have been published on various educational, literary, and informational platforms. She has also been a co-author of various international literary anthologies. In her spare time, Eman likes to volunteer for the benefit of humanity and has worked with major non-profit organizations such as the United Nations, UNICEF, UNDP, and IOM-UN migration. Eman Khalid is an English Language and Literature student with a profound passion for learning. When she is not writing, you will find her reading history books, listening to songs, stargazing, taking long walks at the beach, and capturing the beauty of nature through her camera lens. Connect with Eman on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/emankhalidwriter/