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Impact Personal Safety, SoCal

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Crime & Law, Domestic Violence, Protection Against Abuse, Recreation & Sports, Sports

Mission: We offer dynamic, empowering, self-defense, assertiveness, boundary-setting classes encompassing verbal strategies, awareness skills, and yes, full-force physical assailant defense throughout Southern California. Our training is focused on prevention of and recovery from assault as it puts students in touch with their innate power regardless of size, strength, fitness or (dis)ability level. We are women and men working together to end the cycle of violence.

Results: Since 1984, Impact Personal Safety has successfully empowered and trained thousands of adults and children to defend themselves. Impact Personal Safety teaches self-defense to teenagers and young adults in 7 Los Angeles area high schools.

Target demographics: Women, men, and children

Direct beneficiaries per year: Empowered and trained 500 adults and teenagers to successfully defend themselves.

Geographic areas served: Los Angeles and Southern California

Programs: IMPACT Personal Safety has been training women, men, teens and children in self-defense and personal safety for nearly three decades.

Community Stories

29 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

Impact has given me so much confidence and knowledge to protect myself!
When I first walked into Basics and saw a demonstration, I didn't think I would ever be able to do that. But after the patient instructors took us through broken down specific drills, by the end of the class, I was fighting just how I had seen at the beginning!
After Basics, I was in a few situations while traveling where my education and experience learned at Impact helped me enormously. A man followed me in an elevator at night to my hotel room floor and wouldn't leave. I was able to use the verbal skills I learned to get away and was ready to fight if the need had risen. Luckily it did not but I thank Impact for that skill and confidence.
The instructors are all excellent and really care about their clients!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Impact is so aptly named, because the “impact” the coursework has goes far beyond self-defense — though that aspect is certainly invaluable. I’ve taken the women’s basic and advanced classes and from from day one of Basics, I felt a shift in the way I move in the world. I stand taller and I better recognize my own strength. I feel less afraid in my daily life (including in areas I hadn’t realized fear had festered). I greatly appreciate the focus on violence prevention and consent, and couldn’t be more grateful for the incredible staff and curriculum. EVERYONE should take an Impact class, if they have the chance. It’s a game changer.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Impact method is research-based, very effective, and efficient. I learned more in 20 hours of Impact than in over 500 hours of martial arts training. The class content and teaching approach is age appropriate -- kids, teens and adults all get what they need in a very positive setting. They treat all students with the same incredible level of support and engagement, so the training is effective for people of all physical, emotional and mental capabilities. I recommend this class for everyone as the skills learned can be applied to 'everyday' situations and full-on personal safety assaults. The training even improved how I handled basic 'difficult conversations' at work about setting boundaries with colleagues for managing projects and workload on teams. This is very practical training.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I took the Women's Basics class and the skills I learned I carry with me every day of my life. The staff was professional, the class was supportive and organized, and the material was informative, practical and explained in a way that was empowering. What was the most useful was the verbal skills we learned. I had underestimated how difficult it would be to use my voice and say no, or tell a stranger to move away from me. But once I found my voice I feel stronger and more powerful and much more capable of setting boundaries and keeping myself safe without having to use physical skills. But the fact that I now know so many physical skills for a variety of scenarios, I walk through my life tall, proud and fearless because I know I have options if a situation goes bad. I can now make a choice about how I will respond, vs before when I knew I wouldn't have the faintest idea of how to respond. Thank you IMPACT for giving me confidence, knowledge and empowerment. My life hasn't been the same.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I took an Impact class at my high school, and all girls school in Hancock Park. I was incredibly scared going into it, but I was treated with nothing but kindness, patience, and respect from each member of the staff. I am a stronger and more confident person because of Impact, and I will forever think that taking an Impact class was the best decision of my life. The things that they do for women (and men) are not only incredible, but also imperative.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Impact came into my life when i was a sophomore in high school. For someone who came out of quite a difficult situation from middle school and not as confident from the beginning of high school, impact gave me the confidence and strength to become the independent and confident woman i am today. I love knowing i can defend myself physically and mentally. Due to impact i will never be scared to go anywhere or do anything. They have truly become my family, my role models, and my friends. If i were the president of the united states i would make it a law for everyone to take because of their impact.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Incredible organization -- practical, empowering, non-intimidating, pretty much everything you could want in a self defense organization!

Client Served

Rating: 5

We organized a class for about 12 kids ages 8-11. We can't recommend this organization more highly. Organizing was easy and professional. The class itself was exactly what we were looking for--an age-appropriate, useful, fun and not too scary seminar preparing kids for dealing with all kinds of unwanted attention, from bullies, to overly touchy friends and family, to strangers on the street. The kids learned verbal and physical responses and, when prepared, fought against a padded assailant.
The instructors were knowledgable and organized. The kids had fun. We all came away feeling empowered.
All kids would benefit from this class! Should be part of school!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I organized a private class with seven girls age 10. They did two three hour sessions. All of the girls enjoyed the class and felt empowered afterwards. We all received some important tips as parents in continuing to keep our girls as safe as possible. The staff was positive and warm and the class ratio of staff to children was amazing. The instructors are knowledgeable and care about their mission to empower the people who take their program. I am going to sign up for the woman's class after this experience.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I had heard about Impact from a friend years ago. It had always been on my bucket list, but while I made skydiving and moving across the country happen, I kept somehow making excuses for why learning how to defend myself wasn't really a priority.

After taking the Women's Basics course, I realize that a lot of my resistance was to how afraid I was to feel some powerful emotions. I cried so much my first class! It's a pretty big moment when you realize how many times you've allowed yourself to be victimized. I'm not blaming myself for the actions of others, but I do see how my not standing up for myself (physically, verbally, etc.) made it that much easier for those people to target me.

My instructors were so supportive and understanding. They made it safe for me to feel all of my big feelings while expressing loads of confidence in my ability to master the material. It was contagious. I am absolutely in love with Impact's training - and everyone I met there. Everyone, everyone, everyone should take this course.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I just finished the Women's Basics course and could not be more impressed with Impact and their program. While it can be emotionally and physically draining, the overall sense of empowerment that I took away from the course is something that will stay with me for a long time to come (not to mention the confidence to actually defend myself should I need to). While somewhat expensive, I feel as though it was money well spent as the class was not only thorough but was very hands on. I highly recommend this program to anyone considering it - you will not regret it!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Hi Lisa,

You made me feel so good by remembering me last night! Pretty amazing after 20 years.

Thank you for inviting me to the training on Jan 7/8 in Pasadena.

I work for US Telepacific in downtown LA. Would love a job closer to home in Northridge. These 12 hour days are getting to me. I do technical engineer. Not fulfilling anymore.

The Central Library is across the street from my office and last week I saw a historical exposé on Donaldina Cameron who in the early 1900's up to the 1930's rescued and educated 3000 women and children from slavery. She did this in San Francisco where the Cameron House still stands today.

I can't help but wonder how many lives you have transformed with your training? I hope you have kept track. And your instructors should have the numbers to take pride in as well.

I am so grateful for you,
Shawn

Client Served

Rating: 5

Impact LA's Women's Basics classes made an immense difference for me. I left the program feeling knowledgeable, empowered and most importantly, capable of defending myself. The instructors are professional, articulate and outstanding leaders. I can't say enough good things about this program and its instructors.
In addition to completing the Women's Basics program, I also witnessed a session of the kids' course. All of the young students left their class visibly more confident than when they entered. The transformation was astounding and impressive.
I plan to take additional classes to become a program assistant. I'm incredibly grateful to the Impact LA staff and instructors.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Impact is an amazing organization & the message of empowerment they bring to the community is so needed. Having taken my first class 20+ years ago, I know I was able to walk through life more confident and self assured, knowing that I had the right to stand up for myself while also knowing that I could defend myself if necessary. The teachings of Impact affect everyday life, and although the fighting is a key component to the training, it is the boundary setting, the composure, and the confidence that make the training invaluable. The variety of classes make it easy to get involved right away, and each class provides an impactful training, from the kids class, the 3 hour workshop, the basics (16+ hours), and the advanced classes. Having been a volunteer in classes, it is amazing to see the increase in confidence and composure in graduates - I highly recommend this training for EVERYONE.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have personally taken basics, advanced and weapons. I was so excited for my little girl to take this course. We raise our kids to be polite to adults, never to hit or kick or talk back. This class teaches kids to use their voice in an appropriate place. It's okay to say NO to an adult. It's okay to trust your uh-oh feeling and stand up for yourself. It teaches kids verbal and physical boundaries. My kid felt empowered after taking it. It was fantastic and I'd highly recommend it for every kid, boy or girl. It should be in every school as well! Thank you IMPACT for getting this imperative class out to everyone!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

13 years ago I took the 3-hour Womens Self Defense course. The skill set I learned kept me out of physical jeapordy in three specific incidents while living in Los Angeles. The confidence I gained is invaluable.

Now, my young daughter has experienced the course, and asked to repeat the class. She is exposed to 3 older boys in her Father's household, but the skill set she has now helps my peace of mind. She can speak up for herself and physically defend herself if necessary.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I moved back to L.A. in my early 20's, by myself. I lived in a questionable neighborhood, worked days, & attended night school; which meant I returned home late at night sometimes.
Determined to live life on my terms, mom sent me an article about IMPACT training, I signed up, & over the years, I've had time after time to be glad I did. Whether it was the simple act of setting & enforcing boundaries without being concerned about whether I would be called names; a physical stand-off with two marines late one night after a drinking game, who thought I was drunk enough to mess with; to a husband who lost it, but ended up in anger management for a year instead of me being the one traumatized.
We know society has to change, and I have to believe that one day it will. Until then, women need to be equipped with tools to protect themselves NOW! More importantly, we need to engage life without fear. It's not just a slogan. I hear a lot of friends, neighbors, peers, & family express fear of being alone, being confronted, &/or not knowing what to do. They continue to wait until that wonderful day when way society’s treatment of women actually changes. Life is a lot different when you have simple tools to live the way you want and need to, WHEN you want or need to . . . day or night, out traveling, or home alone.
IMPACT empowers women to live ‘out loud’ now and we NEED that.
Can you imagine what our city, country, &/or world would be like if women roamed it free of fear?
If they knew they could pursue their dreams without repercussion?
If children learned from an early age, what to look out for, and how to avoid or stop it?
For these reasons, and so many others, I sincerely believe that my life is definitely worth fighting for, and so is yours!
IMPACT is an amazing program that’s easy to learn, easy to implement, and needs to be expanded as far as it can go as soon as possible. I believe that then we will see the change we are looking for.

Kirsten F.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Impact changed my life in SUCH a positive way. Learning not only the fighting skills NECESSARY for life in this world but the VERBAL skills I use nearly every day helped me to be more confident, more outspoken, and to set boundaries in situations I don't think I could have before. It's so much more than self defense. I might never use those fighting skills and I hope I never need to but to say "Yes." when you mean "Yes." and "No." when you mean "No." is a immensely powerful gift to give to women. We need more classes like this one in more cities, states, and countries. Impact could change the world.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I don't think I can recommend this organization highly enough in a short review! I took the Women's Intensive a couple of years ago with my two teenage daughters and my two teenage nieces. It was one of the most empowering, bonding experiences we have ever had. As a mother (and aunt) of beloved, beautiful, smart young women, I thought it was profoundly important they get the message that they are not just sitting ducks in the face of aggression they might face. The IMPACT training was practical, thoughtful, careful, compassionate...and fun! (One of my daughters and one niece were able to take the course again recently and loved it.) Thank you IMPACT! My advice to every woman is to TAKE THIS CLASS.

3

Client Served

Rating: 5

After a child and the child's father, who worked as a special aid at my son's school, bullied and intimidated my son to the point that my son no longer wanted to go to school, I thankfully found the IMPACT kid's class and enrolled my son who was 8 at the time. This class helped my son to gain more self confidence in his ability to deal with children who are bullies and adults in their lives who can be dangerous and abusive. The class did not just focus on stranger danger, but more importantly the potential danger and abuse from adults in their lives - like the father of my son's classmate and issues of bullying which statistically happens more often than danger/abuse by strangers. I loved that they teach the kids that it is ok to say "no" to an adult and they teach them to speak up and to speak up loud! Once my son gets old enough I will enroll him in the men's classes and I am also looking into the women's classes. I've recommended this to all my friends with children. Thank you IMPACT for teaching my son very useful skills to help him keep himself safe!