Paris Nordic Jumps for Charity

Published on 16 April 2014

In January this year, two young sisters from Canberra, Paris (12) and Imogen (9) McMahon, set out to learn the challenging sport of Nordic Jumping – all in the name of charity. Hands Across Canberra is inspired by their spirit and drive and grateful for the $700 they donated to help people in need.

In Paris’ words

My name is Paris McMahon and I am 12 years old and in year 6 at Canberra Girls Grammar school.

Late last year I overheard mum talking to a work colleague about some serious family health issues so I wanted to help. I decided to raise money to help. At the same time I wanted to continue to help our sister school in Kenya- the Canberra Sunshine Academy.

Mum came back from a work dinner and was telling me about Hands Across Canberra and what they do. I was really amazed to hear of the work and all the different charities. What I liked the most was that they help those in the most need and all the money raised in Canberra stays in Canberra.

I thought it would be good to help out the people of Canberra too, in a way that money can go to those who don’t get a lot of attention, such as the Homeless. When Peter Gordon told me about 2,000 people in Canberra don’t have homes, that was very shocking.

To raise the money I wanted to do something that would get as much attention as possible, so I thought I would learn to Nordic Jump. I love all types of skiing, and there are no Australian’s who Nordic Jump at all. It is an Olympic Sport, and this year for the first time ever, women were allowed to compete!

Nordic jumping is based on how far you jump. You have a special suit that helps you “fly” and very long ski’s with no edges that does not have the heel locked in.

I was lucky enough to do this in Steamboat Springs in Colorado and learn from the very best. We were in the papers and on television in the USA as we tried to raise as much as we could.

I set up a website and had people sponsor my little sister Imogen and I as we tried to jump as far as we could in the first competition of the season. We combined our four jumps and this added up to 42 meters. My best jump of the night was 12.5m and Imogen’s was 11. Later in the season I jumped 20 meters and Imogen jumped 13.5 meters. It was a lot of fun and we managed to raise $2,100 for our three charities. I had hoped for a lot more, but I am very pleased to know that it is going to a great cause.

Check out Paris’ blog – awesome videos of the brave girls jumping!