A Day of Self Defense –“TOUCH”

Shreya V Arun
Sunday, March 18, 2018

It was by mid of November my father got a call from his colleague, Maya aunty, regarding a workshop ‘TOUCH’ to be held on 1st December, 2017, organized by “YUVA FOR INDIA”. She mentioned that it would be a very useful session especially for girls, as the workshop dwelt with prevention of child abuse .My father registered my name knowing the relevance of the topic.

On December 1st, at around 3:45pm, I along with some of my friends and their mothers reached NAFO Recreation Hall, Salmiya, where the program would commence and at exactly 4pm, the workshop began. The session started with a prayer. An introduction about our facilitator, Mrs. Molly Divakaran was given by Adithya Prakash, my friend.

Molly mam threw us with a number of questions to fresh up our thoughts.She asked “What is abuse?” followed by many challenging questions like “Is abuse the responsibility of just one person?” We tried to answer most of the questions and the answer was “No, abuse is of collective responsibility”. After interacting with us, she made us feel so light to ask any question and to open up our mind.

She asked us “What are the 2 types of dangers around us?” There was quite a long time of silence .No one knew the answer to it .We had a number of answers and not just two, like: chemicals, fire, sharp objects, electronics etc .Then Molly aunty answered to it: “Dangers from things and Dangers from people”. Dangers from things include: hot stuffs, water, fire, chemicals, sharp objects etc. Dangers from people include: cheating, bullying, stalking, emotional abuse, verbal abuse, molestation etc.

The next question was “Why are woman abused?” Women are abused due to:
Misogyny - ingrained prejudice against women.
Patriarchy - a system of society or government in which men hold the power and women are largely excluded from it.
Patronize - treat with an apparent kindness which betrays a feeling of superiority.
Lack of rights, low income, unemployment, easy access to violence, easy access to bad visuals and advertisements.
The next session was on child abuse.

There are 2 types of abuse: Contact abuse and Non-Contact abuse.
Contact abuse is all about a golden triangle. Non-Contact abuse is done by showing irrelevant pictures, telling substandard things etc.

Next was on how to stay safe:
1) Don’t put yourself in bad situation. Example: Avoid conflicts and be careful of sleep over’s.
2) Be confident.
3) Stay aware. Example: Attackers follow weak people so be aware of what is happening around you.
4) “No! Go! Tell” Principle:
First say NO!
Then say GO!
Then tell a person whom you trust .Prefer telling your parents.

The next session was on “How should parents handle such situations?”
1) By avoiding denial and remain calm.
2) Don’t interrogate
3) Reassure the child that they did nothing wrong.

The best defense principle:
Access the person, Try to neutralize, if not neutralized then attack, then get away.
For the last session, that is ‘Self defense tips’, her husband, Mr.Divakaran too joined her for techniques to be demonstrated, which was the most interesting part of the session.

Defense techniques against
1) Single Arm Grab
2) Double Arm Grab
3) Wrist Grab
4) Single Shoulder Grab

5) Both Shoulder Grab
6) Front Bear hug
7) Rear Bear hug
8) Neck Grab
9) Rear Choke
10) Side Headlock
11) Straight Punch

were demonstrated and all the participants of the workshop were made to practice all the defense techniques. The program ended with Shanthi Mantra.

It was a session which transferred a lot positive aspects to “we” girls, to open up at any situation and to have our own safety within us. The defense mechanisms improved our ability and to live more independently in this society.

Though the session TOUCH was helpful for we girls to live independently, the first step should start from home. Every child should be brought up in such a way as to be a good citizen who considers his/her grandparents, parents, siblings, cousins, neighbor’s, and people in and around you to have a healthy surrounding. Then they can look around the world in the same aspect and there will be no abuse around. Our world will be a beautiful space to live.

The article A Day of Self Defense –“TOUCH” is solely written by me and has not taken from any other source. If taken I have given due credit to the original author in my article. I have not used any images or text without the original owner’s permission. I take sole responsibility of any dispute arise in terms of copyright regarding this article. An image of shutter stock is used. This article is solely written for Indiansinkuwait.com as a Young Reporter

Shreya V Arun
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