Monday, April 24, 2017

A Journey of Transformation: Shelley Schaaf, New Board Member

Shelley Schaaf is one of the newest members of the IMPACTChicago Board of Directors. As part of her volunteer work for IMPACT Chicago, Shelley is coordinating the important work of recruiting new suited instructors.

Shelley grew up in the Chicago land area and currently lives in the South Suburbs.  She has spent most of her professional career working in non-profit community organizations wanting to make a difference in the lives of all people.  To that end, she is the Human Resource Director of Ounce of Prevention. 

Ounce of Prevention offers her the opportunity to return to her professional roots in early intervention programming.  Shelley has a strong belief that engaging with children and their families at an early stage of development provides people with the best opportunity to achieve their fullest potential.

In 2016 Shelley enrolled in the IMPACT Chicago Core Program expecting to be able to check off another task from her long list of things she thought she should do throughout her life.  The Core Program turned out to be much more.  It was a journey that provided her with physical skills of self-defense but also provided her with a new sense of strength and power.

For Shelley, it was an amazing journey of transformation.  She made the decision to join the Board in hope of helping other women experience a journey similar to hers.  She hopes to watch other women walk out of the Core Program as “bad ass warriors”.

Sheila Hickey, IMPACT Chicago Board

Monday, April 17, 2017

Self-Defense in La La Land

In a Huffington Post article, “You Oughta Be in Pictures…NOT,” Ellen Snortland, Author, Playwright, Activist, Lawyer, Self-defense Advocate, and More—writes about her experience in creating the documentary film about women’s self-defense Beauty Bites Beast.  Within the context of women’s history month, she reflects upon the challenges that female filmmakers face.

Mark your calendar for Tuesday October 24 when IMPACT Chicago will screen Beauty Bites Beast and host filmmaker Ellen Snortland and producer Yudit Sidikman as part of our 30th anniversary celebration.

Monday, April 10, 2017

IMPACT Chicago is Hiring Suited Instructors


We seek dedicated, compassionate, and dynamic people to join our Instructor Team as we:
  • support others to find their power, develop their confidence, and enhance their safety
  • work toward a non-violent world in which all people can live safely and with dignity

The Job
Suited instructors are part of a mixed-gender female-led instructor team. Suited instructors play the role of an aggressor in simulated scenarios through which students learn both verbal and physical skills. Suited instructors wear customized full-body armor to ensure students’ and their safety in scenarios where students defend themselves by striking as hard as they can. Instructors are needed to work part-time on a varied schedule that includes weekday, evening, and weekend hours.ons
The Qualifications
  • Ability to teach a physically demanding curriculum
  • Excellent physical condition with experience in martial arts,  contact sports, or other intensive physical activity.
  • Ability and willingness to provide support to students in a training process that is sometimes difficult and emotionally charged
  • Ability and willingness to play the role of an aggressor in simulated attack scenarios
  • Reliable access to a vehicle and cell phone

To find out more about becoming a Suited Instructor, email  or go to

Monday, April 3, 2017

Engaging New Voices: April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month


The theme for the 2017 Sexual Assault Awareness Month is Engaging New Voices. The goal is to provide resources and support for leaders in these four groups to stand against sexual assault:

  • Members of Greek Life
  • Faith leaders
  • Coaches
  • Fathers
For more information, click here