“Everyone will be victimized at some point, but you can choose whether you’ll be a victim."
Sgt. Gary Watson, Defensive Tactics Instructor with Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office, shared this lesson two weeks ago at a free Self-Defense Workshop at Morningside Baptist Church. He explained that trouble is part of life, and we have an important choice in how we prepare for and process it.
This was a familiar lesson to the women present who had completed the Homeownership Program. We select program participants partly on the basis of their need, and they learn through the program that hard work can mitigate a lot of hardship. Nine women attended the Self-Defense Workshop on Saturday, Feb. 24th, 2018, where they received valuable instruction from Sgt. Watson on protecting themselves and their families. He drew upon his experiences in the military and law enforcement to explain that everyday self-defense is largely about prevention and readiness—making oneself an undesirable target and being prepared to respond effectively if one is targeted anyway.
He also guided attendees through 3 basic response moves and provided resources for further training. This workshop was open to all Habitat homeowners and program participants, as well as their family, friends, and neighbors. It marks the first of several workshops planned for the year by the Neighborhood Support Committee at Habitat Spartanburg. The Neighborhood Support Committee provides ongoing support and services for Habitat homeowners long after closing, and they are expanding their reach of impact by opening events like this one to the general public.
We are thrilled when Habitat homeowners come back again and again for lifelong learning, and we look forward to making these opportunities available to more people in Spartanburg.
Thank you to Sgt. Gary Watson for offering this workshop, to Morningside Baptist Church for allowing us to use your facilities, and to the wonderful women who made time to learn with us on a Saturday morning!