Paralympics Swimmer & Medalist
Marayke Jonkers is one of Australia’s most revered paralympics athletes. Marayke speaks publicly about her swimming career and challenges training as a Paralympics swimmer. For corporate audiences, she integrates stories of the obstacles she has faced and her successes into motivational presentations tailored to the business’ needs within the over-arching theme ‘the harder you work, the luckier you get.’
Marayke Jonkers swam to prominence when she clinched two bronze medals for Australia at the Athens 2004 Games. Four years earlier she had qualified for the Australian team only to finish an agonisingly close fourth at the Sydney 2000 Paralympics.
Far from giving up, she persevered and went on to not only win two medals, but to complete two university degrees achieving the highest grades, volunteer in the community and launch a new career in journalism- all while in full training.
Marayke speaks publicly about her swimming career and challenges training as a Paralympics swimmer. For corporate audiences, she integrates stories of the obstacles she has faced and her successes into motivational presentations tailored to the business’ needs within the over-arching theme ‘the harder you work, the luckier you get.’
Marayke has broken over 70 Australian records in breaststroke, individual medley, freestyle and butterfly. After 10 years representing Australia, she is now the eldest and longest serving female on the Australian Paralympics swim team.
In 2004 she graduated from university with a Bachelor of Social Science, and achieved high distinction grades. By 2006 she had a second degree, in communications for which she received a Dean’s commendation for academic excellence.
A tireless advocate for people with disabilities, Marayke’s week often includes a visit to schools speaking to students about spinal injury prevention, or encouraging children with disabilities to take up sport.
Marayke was named the Queensland Young Achiever 2005 and appointed 2005-08 Australia Day ambassador by QLD premier Peter Beattie. As an official Ambassador Marayke visits a different Council region each year to deliver the official Australia Day address and participate.
She was recognized as Sunshine Coast Outstanding Paralympian 2004; Olympic torch bearer, Sydney 2000 torch relay and Young Australian of the year finalist 2004, 2001.
She had the audience spellbound with her dazzling list of achievements - in and out of a swimming pool. As the organiser of this event she impressed me with her ability to link her experiences and achievements to the findings of the youth survey. Her talk was therefore highly relevant to the launch event.
Marayke captured the audience with her presentation, using a mix of humour and real life experiences. Marayke was inspirational and motivational, what a great way to close the conference! As final keynote speaker she bought together the theme of the conference, closing the conference on a 'high'.
-Cerebral Palsy League of Queensland
I have had the honour of sharing the stage with Marayke on numerous occasions. Her presentations are dynamic, insightful and of a professional standard. I highly recommend her to you.