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The list features active athletes, including 14 Olympians (three of whom also competed at the YOG) and 10 YOG alumni, sports coaches, students and young professionals, all under 30. Despite coming from all walks of life, the Young Change-Makers (YCMs), who were nominated by their respective National Olympic Committees, have one mission in common – to support the young YOG athletes and to inspire other young people in their communities using their experiences at the Youth Olympic Games.
The YCM programme is now in its fifth cycle following its success at the previous two Summer and two Winter Youth Olympic Games. The programme demonstrates just one of the unique elements of the YOG, along with the Young Reporter and Athlete Role Model initiatives.
As well as promoting the YOG and the Olympic values in their countries, the role of the YCMs is focused on helping the athletes of their national teams get the most out of their YOG experience. They will encourage them to interact with people from different sports and backgrounds and to take part in a unique programme of activities and workshops, featuring sessions on injury prevention, anti-doping, careers in sport and media training. The lessons learned will equip the athletes with the sports skills to perform to the best of their ability on the field of play, and the life skills to be true ambassadors of their sport off the field of play, inspiring young people in their communities to get active and embrace the Olympic values.
Previous YCMs have credited this unique opportunity as a means to helping them pursue professional careers in the field of sport, in areas such as events, coaching, media and social development, with many staying within the Olympic Movement as volunteers or securing jobs with NOCs, sports federations and organising committees, or even returning to the YOG in the role of Chef de Mission.
Many have also taken up the opportunity to be part of the YCM+ programme, launched in 2016. The programme, supported by Panasonic, offers YCMs the chance to apply grants to support their own community youth development projects. Six of these YCM+ members currently sit on IOC commissions as a reflection of their commitment to making a difference through sport.
The Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018 will be held from 6 to 18 October in Argentina.
For more information on the Youth Olympic Games, please visit: www.olympic.org/yog.
Sofia Goicoechea Ruiz
Golf – Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014
Pentathlon – Olympic Games Rio 2016 (gold medallist)
Alpine Skiing – Youth Olympic Games Innsbruck 2012
Nicky van Rossem
Judo – Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014 (silver medallist)
Taekwondo – Olympic Games Rio 2016
Sofia Machado Paonessa
Alexander Jimenez Ramirez
Gee Won Yoo
Cecilie Hedegaard Bak
Priscilla Lazo Nieto
Swimming – Youth Olympic Games Singapore 2010
Snowboard – Olympic Games Sochi 2014
Rhythmic Gymnastics – Olympic Games Rio 2016
Ming Tai Chan
Long jump – Olympic Games Rio 2016
Rifle shooting – Olympic Games Rio 2016 & Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014 (bronze & gold medallist)
Lakshman Rohith Maradapa
Rivaldo Tandra Pangesthio
Basketball – Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014
Swimming – Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014
Ingibjorg Kristin Jonsdottir
Swimming - Youth Olympic Games Singapore 2010
Olympic Games Rio 2016 (silver medallist) & Youth Olympic Games Singapore 2010 (2 x gold medallist)
Christel El Saneh
Maria Delgado Del Rio
Runa Moller Tangstad
Rugby – Olympic Games Rio 2016 (silver medallist)
Mariana Rosado Meléndez
Swimming – Olympic Games Rio 2016 & London 2012
Fencing – Youth Olympic Games Singapore 2010
Archery – Olympic Games Rio 2016
Badminton – Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014
Swimming – Olympic Games London 2012
Cycling – Olympic Games London 2012
Yin Cheng Chi
Triathlon – Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014
High jump – Olympic Games Rio 2016 & Youth Olympic Games Nanjing 2014 (gold medallist)
Ines Remersaro Coronel
Swimming – Olympic Games London 2012 & Rio 2016
Equestrian – Youth Olympic Games Singapore 2010 (bronze medallist)