Monday, February 29, 2016

Girls on Fire

Susan Harrow, author of True Shield: Verbal Self-DefenseTraining for Young Women & Teens, is committed to girls having the tools and the “fire” to use their words to keep themselves safe.  Her book is built around 10 scenarios that girls often face:
1.       A “cool” girl spreads rumors or teases you.
2.       A guy grabs your butt or boobs.
3.       You are offered drugs.
4.       A bully is targeting you.
5.       You are the target of a cyber-bully.
6.       A teacher ignores you.
7.       A teacher gives you a grade you don’t believe you deserve.
8.       You are being catcalled on the street
9.       When you want a job or an internship but no one thinks you have any skills.
10.   When someone asks you out on a date and the answer is NO.
For each scenario, Harrow describes the scenario, what is really going on, what you can say, what you can do and provides words of wisdom from other girls in their teens and twenties.

For more information or a copy of the book, go to

Monday, February 22, 2016

Donors Make an IMPACT!

Tuition covers about 65% of the costs of the Core Program and IMPACT for Girls.Donors cover the rest.It is not too late to donate.Please send a check to IMPACT Chicago, 4057 N.Damen Ave, Chicago IL 60618 or contact Tara at to donate through Paypal.Unless otherwise noted below, the donation was to the IMPACT Chicago General Fund.Thank you to all those who supported the IMPACT Chicago 2015 Fund Drive!

Jeanne Adams
Janet & David Altman
Lisa Amoroso - in honor of the IMPACT admin team
Arlene Benzinger
Dolores & Glenn Bjorkman
Susan Blessing
Jill Britton - on behalf of IMPACT’s Board of Directors
Patricia Broughton
Sheila Carson - on behalf of Katie Kramer
Darcy Chamberlin
Wesley & Kimberly Clifton
Nancy Cohen
Christina Coines
Christina Collins
Maury Collins
Dianne Costanzo - in memory of Adrian Costanzo
Cynthia Coy - in memory of Marilyn Coy
Tammy & Jim DeBoer - on behalf of women everywhere
Julie Dorfman & Jerry Herst - in honor of Dori Conn
Maureen Dunn
Carla Eisenberg
Cheri Erdman
Carol Ference
Kira Freigang
Gwyn Friend
Eileen Gelblat
Tess Given
Robyn & Tijuana Gray
Debborah Harp
Margit Henderson
Victoria Herbert
Constance Heyer - in memory of Deborah Ann Heyer
Belinda & Ed Hidalgo
Demetria Iazzetto
Loretta Jackson
Valerie Jenkins
June Kirk
Katherine Knapowski
Mary Komparda--in honor of Dianne Costanzo
Kelli Landes
Susan Landwer - in memory of Denise Fox
Ruth Lipschutz
Carmen Maso
Marianne Merola
Dorothy Meyer
Clara Orban
Lauren Perez
Liz Pfau
Rachel Pildis
Lisa Pines
A.C. Racette
Don & Judy Rosedale- on behalf of Katie Skibbe
Roger Safian
Laura Sanders
Therese Schmieg
Gail Schubert
Janette Scott
Christopher Siebert
Katie Skibbe
Linda Stawicki - on behalf of Jill Britton and Henry Borczyk
Martha Thompson-in honor of the Admin Team--Kathleen, Laura, Lisa, & Tara
Allison Tolman - on behalf of Molly Norris
Iris Waichler
Gail Warner

Monday, February 15, 2016

Five Questions to Evaluate a Self-Defense Tip

Empowerment Self-Defense Instructor Joanne Factor of Strategic Living in Self-defense offers five questions to help decide whether any specific piece of advice is empowering and worth adding to you self-defense toolkit.
1. Is it based on reality? 
 2. Does it give you tools you can use? 
3. Does it make your life bigger? 

4. Does it avoid blaming those targeted for attack? 
5. Does it prioritize self-determination? 

For more details about these five questions and other great resources, check out Joanne Factor's newsletter

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Parties and Sexual Assault

Researchers Jason Lindo, Peter Siminski, and Isaac Swensen have found that events that intensify partying on college campuses increase reports of rape by 28 percent.  Offenders are typically in the same age range as the victims and include offenders known to the victim as well as those unknown.

Given that the majority of sexual assaults are not reported, the number of sexual assaults is likely much higher than reported. The researchers recommend limiting alcohol consumption at parties to reduce incidents of sexual assault.

Lindo, Jason M., Peter Siminski, and Isaac D. Swensen. December 2015. College Party Culture and Sexual Assault. NBER Working Paper No. w21828. Available at SSRN.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Power in Action

Wonder Woman/Super Hero
 Amy Cuddy, Associate Professor at Harvard Business School, is a social psychologist who studies the relationship between body language and feelings of competence and power introduced the concept of “power posing.” I call them "Victory," "Wonder Woman," and "Oprah" or "Rapinoe" [updated after Megan Rapinoe led the U.S. Women's National Team to victory in the 2019 Women's World Cup].
The idea is that even if we fake powerful body language it affects the way we think and feel. Similar to what we do in IMPACT to get our bodies doing powerful things and before we know it we feel powerful. 


Doing “power poses” in IMPACT is lots of fun and introduces the idea of feeling power in our bodies very quickly.  

Megan Rapinoe

Why don’t you try out these power poses and see what you think. 

Martha Thompson
IMPACT Chicago Lead Instructor
Co-Chair IMPACT Administrative Team