Many women live with some degree of fear, and many lose their identity or do not realize their potential because of violence. The Empowerment Project is committed to addressing this problem by increasing awareness, encouraging assertiveness, and helping women recognize they are worth the effort to defend.
In promoting this program, we are in no way stating that the prevention of sexual violence is the sole responsibility of individual women. No self-protection program can guarantee that a woman will be safe from sexual violence. Men choose to commit sexual assault; for that reason the responsibility for stopping sexual violence lies with men and ultimately with society in general. Unfortunately, while waiting for men to embrace their responsibility and make changes, women are at risk for abuse and disempowerment. This program intends to empower women and encourage resistance until societal change occurs.
Violence against women and girls is a broad societal issue. Prevention, and ultimately, the elimination of sexual violence must be the long-term goal of not only women, but society in general. This program goes beyond women’s self-defence to encourage the empowerment and education of women and girls.
Specifically, our aim is:
• To empower and help women feel in control of their lives
• To include women in the fight against sexual violence
• To help women feel safer
• To educate women and girls about sexual violence and prevention
This project will encourage women’s empowerment by:
• Challenging rape myths.
• Educating women about sex roles and their dangerous effects.
• Encouraging support among women and women’s organizations.
• Discussing risk factors.
• Promoting women’s self-worth and self-esteem.
• Supporting a woman’s right to be assertive.
• Encouraging women to trust their instincts.
• Teaching women self-defense techniques as a last resort.
• Telling women that sexual violence is not their fault.