From Mini to Mighty! Amita's Olympic Journey
Living the Olympic Dream Journey - Amita Berthier TOKYO OLY’20
Let’s support her as one Z Family as she aims for Paris 2024!
Amita was a little 6yr old when she fell in love with fencing at Z. She has trail blazed a journey and made her family, our school, her college, and the nation proud! Her accomplishments are far too many to mention - including SEA Games, Asian Champs, World Champs, NCAA, and Tokyo Olympics - where she continues to blaze a path to inspire future Singapore fencers.
But behind all this achievement lay the real work, including 15 years of gruelling training and sacrifices, many ups and downs at competitions, personal family challenges, and the solitude of being away from family and friends to pursue her goals for many years. This focus, discipline and determination - such strength of character truly makes her “The Best Inspire”.
As she prepares again to give her very best to qualify and compete at the Paris 2024 Olympics, we at Z want to come together as a family to show our support for her. Gearing up for the Olympics is not only a big personal sacrifice, but it also taxes the family for certain out of pocket expenses that may not be covered by the state and federation, amounting to over $10-$20K in this final stage.
As such, we are having a fundraiser for Amita and our Olympic Dream fund at our 30th Anniversary gala dinner on 18th Nov Saturday, where all proceeds net off the costs of the dinner will be contributed to this fund for her. We aim to raise $10K, and Z Fencing has pledged $3K, or 30% of the target to be raised.
Please consider supporting this dinner event, and/or giving a voluntary contribution of $30, $50, $100 or whatever you and your child feel comfortable with (details at end of letter). It will surely give her a psychological boost while she is far away from family training alone in the US with top fencers to maximise her chances for success, that we are “All FOR ONE” with her.
Perhaps one day, it might inspire your child to aspire on this Olympic journey too! Meanwhile, please read this personal account of Amita’s journey where she went from “mini to mighty mouse”!
(picture - Amita always willingly returns to give back and inspire the next generation)
Amita’s Olympic Journey - From Mini to Mighty!
(Picture: That long journey every Olympian must make - copyright of external party)
My passion for fencing all began at Z Fencing. A leisurely walk at United Square was where I first sighted the club and watching young kids under the watchful eyes of Coach James caught my family's attention. Like they say, the rest is history!
My sister Aarya and I were fortunate to have had a "fencing home" at Z and I continue to go back to that home whenever I am back in Singapore. I will never forget the coaches who always made every lesson a memorable and inspiring one. Lessons were tough, the feedback given at times were pointed and timely.
What made being a member of Z Fencing unique, is its visionary training plans that took us beyond home. I believe we were one of the first to have travelled to Europe for the cadet circuit way back in 2009, and participated in training camps in China and Germany. We had and still have coaches who believed in us and pushed us beyond our comfort zones.
I am in awe of Coach TK Wong who has always had the vision along with his team to formulate plans, being courageous enough to court stellar coaches from overseas and putting in place "Vision 2020".
I remember sitting in a big hall with my family and Coach TK emphatically saying how Singapore will qualify for the 2020 Olympics! I believe that statement was done sometime in 2008 and it just got us all excited.....believing in the idea of being an olympian and holding on to the vision that it was not impossible. To Coach TK Wong and his team, we thank you for your vision.
(Picture: This BELIEVE - Olympic Dream medal was commissioned at Z’s 20th anniversary and given to each Z Gala participant)
This note won't be complete without my heartfelt thanks to Coach James for always having the faith in my ability. I may not be training under him today, but his encouraging words across the years, warm hand shakes and his broad smile have given me the strength to soldier on. He made fencing exciting and imbued passion in many of us.
I will always carry the moniker "Mighty Mouse" in my heart for a long time to come - I am probably the only one who was fortunate enough to have gotten that "name"! He made a 6-year old believe that she was special and that she had a gift that was special. All you need is one person to believe in you. Thank you Coach James (OLY '92 Barcelona).
Coach Joseph (OLY '20 Tokyo) has been a coach where we all are able to go when needing to fine tune our skills, listen to our problems and he has a heart of gold. He is generous with his time and is sincere to help anyone who needs his assistance. He has travelled the miles with many of us, been our mentor and a friend as well. He is also family to many of us. This is the mark of what Z Fencing creates - a family within a family.
(picture: Amita was part of the Z Lighthouse project, and had her team mates and coaches working as one on this Olympic dream journey, and "out of many one - and out of one there will be many")
Z Fencing will always be special to many of us - if you have had the good fortune of being trained by some of the best like Coach Teo, Coach Jing Li , Coach Ronald Tan (OLY '92 Barcelona), Coach Esther, Coach Edward, Coach Han, Coach Fritz and many others then you would know that all at Z Fencing have and will always coach you with all their hearts and dedication.
Honour, Chivalry, Grace are indeed the hallmark of our wonderful club.
I am proud to be a member of Z Fencing and it is indeed the crucible where my formative years of passion and grit were formed. Here's wishing Z Fencing many more years of success and inspiring generations to come!
Happy 30th anniversary!
Amita Berthier aka "Mighty Mouse"
Olympian Tokyo 2020
Dinner Fundraising for Olympic Dream - Amita
(pictures: Amita flag bearer at Asian Games 2023 - from external copyright holders)
All proceeds from dinner net the costs of the dinner will be channeled to our first Olympic Dream Fund for Amita in her bid to qualify and medal at the Paris 2024 Olympics. Our aim is to raise $10K for her to help offset unfunded meals, additional accommodation and transport needs that her family has to fund out of pocket, which goes way over $10K. Z Fencing, as part of our 30th anniversary, will be contributing $3K, and hopefully this will help jump start the fund with at least 30% of the target.
All Z members are welcome to participate in the fundraiser dinner subject to any space constraints. If you cannot join us, but still would like to support Amita and participate in our Olympic Dream for Amita, Singapore and Z Fencing, you can consider giving a voluntary contribution. Any amount is appreciated - suggested amount is $30, $50, $100 or whatever you are happy and comfortable with.
Please use the QR code below or UEN number (UEN: 199407099E ) and put “Olympic Dream 1 - Amita” so that we can earmark it for her.
Let’s encourage our young children and fencers to support and participate in this dream that Amita is helping to blaze a trail for. She is truly one of our “The Best Inspire”. We can all be proud to support one of our very own and who knows, this action might inspire one of our young ones in future to take on the Olympic flame too!
PLEASE NOTE: REGISTER EARLY AND COME EARLY
You can come anytime from 10.30am onwards for the carnival or 5pm for the dinner. Do come early so as to give sufficient time to finish all the 6 challenges and enjoy the fun festivities, and as Nov 18th is a Saturday, parking is difficult and limited nearer around lunch time (11am - 2pm) and also after 5pm for banquet dinners during the weekends in SAFRA.
Once again, to avoid disappointment, register now for the Z Gala and/or Dinner here: