A martial arts champion doesn't want to rescue kids. She's teaching them to save themselves.
Today's hero traveled from the USA to India to teach kids Japanese-style ass kicking. Heroes making heroes. We like that.
Protect a child, you save her for a day. Teach her to kick ass, you save her for a lifetime.
These kids are in danger of being snatched on the street or even sold by a parent desperate to pay debts. Many organizations are working hard to prevent kidnapping and trafficking and to rescue those who've been sold.
Karate champion Belle Staurowsky is teaching these kids to stand up for themselves.
It might sound crazy to think that a kid can protect herself, but self-defense training is actually quite effective. A recent study involving Kenyan girls found that self-defense classes were key in driving down the rate of violent rape. The year before the study, nearly a quarter of the girls were raped. After the training, the rape rate went down to 9%.
Belle has accomplished many things in her life, but this might be the biggest one.
Because this isn't just about teaching martial arts. She's helping them take charge of their own lives. They're learning to kick and punch, yes, but they're also learning self-discipline and hard work. They feel powerful. They are not about to take any crap from anybody.
She's not the kind of person you picture when you think about international aid workers.
She's not a social worker. She's not a doctor. She doesn't dig wells. But she's using her skills and her story to help other people.