Adding Violence Prevention Education to Organizational Toolboxes

For as long as I can remember, summer camps and scouting programs have been invested in giving children the skills to navigate their worlds in a bigger and bolder way, by providing a place to explore outside formal educational systems in safe spaces, gently moderated by adults who foster growth in healthy ways. When stories of abuse within some of these programs began to surface about two decades ago, many administrators implemented policies and procedures to protect the children in their care. In order for these policies to protect children from sexual abuse, we need to understand the anatomy of assault. Addressing access and isolation: Perpetrators look for systems that have flaws in secur

ESD Is A Movement

I stood shoulder to shoulder in a circle of about forty women. Some were smiling and some were solemn as we passed a colorful ball of cord from one to another, each woman wrapping a length around one wrist before handing the ball to her neighbor. When the circle was wholly entwined, each woman forming a link in the chain, one spoke. “Whatever happens now, let there be no doubt that we’re part of a movement,” she said. The speaker was Yehudit (Yudit) Zicklin-Sidikman, the founder and President of ESD Global. Each woman in our circle had gathered to spend a week in Huguenot New York, in the Summer of 2019, to participate in an intensive training program for Empowerment Self Defense (ESD) instr

What About The Boys?

​​Why should ESD be accessible not only to girls and women, but also to boys and men and people of all genders? ​According to the research, the ratio for sexual assault for women is approaching is 1:1. In other words, almost every woman will suffer from some form of sexual assault or harassment in her life. Until now, statistics had predicted that 1 in every 10 men will suffer from gender-based violence. However, recent, more in-depth research has shown that the numbers may be drastically higher-- possibly even reaching 1 in 6 or 1 in 5. Some studies would go so far as to imply 1 in 4. Read that again. 1 in 4 men may experience some form of sexual attack in their life-time? Yes. Why the con

The Three Stages of Boundary Setting

“Could you please respect my space and take a step away from me?” “I do not want to have this conversation with you right now. I need you to respect my decision.” These sentences seemed absolutely rude to me before my Level 1 Training in New York this summer. Even though I see myself as a very determined and confident person, who knows what I want and can communicate it strongly, there is an area where I am totally insecure with expressing my needs and wishes. And that’s when it comes to telling people that they make me uncomfortable or scared. Communicating these specific feelings, I always feel that it is rude and not appropriate, that I have to be nice and polite, just wait it out, get th

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