« There is a universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities: violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable.»
Ban Ki Moon
Former Secretary-General of the United Nations
Message from the President
I have always been concerned about the struggle of women to achieve financial autonomy and defend their physical integrity. I cannot resign myself to this situation and want to actively speak up against the injustice and violence done to us just because we are women.
According to UN-Women estimates, « 35% of women have suffered physical and/or sexual violence from an intimate partner or sexual violence from another person. » By violence, we mean verbal, physical, sexual, psychological, cybernetic, economic aggression… The forms are multiple, generating suffering and silence.
I’ve lived through this painful situation. That’s why I’ve been looking for solutions. I became a member of the International European Soroptimist association, a network of women services clubs committed to improve the status of women and promote human rights for a better world.
It was during a conference on acts of violence against women, given at my club in 2013, that I met Martial Vout, who spoke about his instinctive self-defense technique. I was immediately seduced by this natural and non-aggressive method. I organized a first workshop, then a second one, and after the third one, we decided to create: the Martial Vout Association of Female Self-Defense, in French: Association Martial Vout d’Autodéfense Féminine (AMVAF).
AMVAF enables women to provide assistance to other women and combat gender violence. Our association offers workshops in instinctive self-defense techniques in Switzerland, Europe and India, with the aim of learning how to respond to verbal and/or physical acts of violence, and become aware of one’s innate defense abilities to overcome fear.
Thanks to donations and the course fees paid by attendees, our participants have learned to defend themselves and also enabled AMVAF, since its creation in 2016, to finance the training of 15 instructors in India by Martial Vout. These instructors in turn teach those self-defense principles to hundreds of girls and women living in the slums of Mumbai and Delhi.
I invite you to join us and support our cause. The fight against women abuse is everyone’s business.
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