As we reflect on the first six months of 2020, like you, we never could have anticipated how this year would unfold. Yet even in the midst of it all, we have continued to serve individuals, families, businesses, schools, and communities looking to end assault, abuse, and trafficking against all women and girls. We are standing strong and are more determined than ever to continue serving others through our mission. We are thrilled to have you standing with us.
This year started off full speed ahead with women and girls of all ages from California to the Carolinas being trained and educated. Prior to the mandatory COVID-19 shutdown, SASS Go reached 600 women and girls in our empowered self-defense courses. Our instructors taught in over 40 businesses, places of worship, high schools, colleges, fitness centers, community centers, and more! Nearly 30% of those participants were trained at little or no cost, and our commitment to train foster youth and survivors of trafficking, assault, and abuse took us across 8 states and the District of Columbia.
In mid-March, SASS Go adapted to the shutdown and went virtual by offering a variety of online courses, including ones for high school and college girls, women, and parents of elementary and middle school youth. You don't want to miss these informative, engaging, and crucial courses you can take from the comfort of your own home. Visit our website to learn more!
Understanding that sheltering in place can also mean isolation in volatile environments for many, SASS Go highlighted free and anonymous resources for those needing help or immediate assistance. You can find a list of those resources here.
To keep our moves strong, minds sharp, and bodies healthy, we launched our Workouts & Wisdom series and reached over 600 Sassters. You can check out that informative and inspiring series here!
We also launched a speakers series at the University of South Carolina. Over 100 women heard from journalist and change-maker Gretchen Carlson, safety and threat assessment expert James Hamilton, and domestic violence expert Julie Owens. These formidable forces shared their time and talents to better prepare us to advocate for and protect ourselves.
In May, we officially certified new instructors from 4 states during our National Instructor Training which started in Columbia, SC. Through laughter, sweat, and tears, these women embodied the true SASS spirit and continued to display immense dedication through rigorous Phases 2 and 3. Soon they will be impacting thousands within their communities.
You can check out a sneak peek of instructor training below! Special thanks to Apex Athletic Performance for providing such a beautiful facility for our athletes to train in and to Made Film Co. for creating such a compelling video. If you want to learn more about becoming an instructor, click here or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We believe that knowledge is power! Putting this principle into action, SASS Go dove head first into multiple cutting-edge trainings with experts across the country on relevant topics ranging from crimes against women, to strangulation, threat assessment, and human trafficking. These conferences ensure that we provide our Sassters with the most current information and trauma-informed care.
We are able to keep going because YOU keep giving. Our Sassters have shown up big this year to help support SASS Go's mission and the women and girls we serve.
SASS Go participated in our first Midlands Gives event where you helped raise nearly $18,000 so we can GO! In addition, we are grateful to have received support from the Greater Chapin Community Foundation, Dominion Energy, and the Central Carolina Community Foundation's Cheerful Giver.
To learn more about the power of your donation, watch the short video below. To learn more about the many ways you can support SASS Go, click here.
SASS Go is thrilled that its impact was honored through the selection of our very own Shannon Henry to represent South Carolina at the National Jefferson Awards, founded by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, in Washington DC and that SASS Go was selected to present at NOVA's (National Organization for Victim Assistance) annual conference in Orlando, Florida.
SASS Go's efforts and mission were further highlighted through speaking opportunities at Rotary Clubs, the Own It Summit at Georgetown University, and features on podcasts, including the Apple Podcasts Nonprofit Leadership Podcast (June 6, 2020) and the Speak Strength Podcast (Episode 7).
All this and it's only July! We look forward to what the remainder of the year has in store and being back together in person as conditions permit. Thank you again for being such a valuable part of our team!