By Evelyn Bonilla
Each year throughout the United States hundreds of children are reported missing. Victim’s parents search endlessly to no avail and the cries of “why did this happen to my child” go unanswered. In truth, we have to ask ourselves; is there a way to prevent this from happening? Can we prepare our children for the unexpected and teach them; the danger signs and what to look for in order to stay safe?
“The Karate Kids”, a husband and wife black belt team; are concerned that this problem will only increase if children are sent out to the world unprepared. Tired of seeing the news and hearing of the many cases, Orest and Lucy Dzydzora decided to try to find a way to help. They came up with a program that would teach children and parents about child abduction prevention and self defense. The result a program called C.A.P.S-Child Abduction Prevention & Self Defense.
This specific program creates awareness of the dangers of abduction by using Isshinryu Karate and interactive role playing. The Dzydzora’s incorporate a hands on training approach to make children aware of their surroundings and to teach them how to avoid dangerous situations. Lucy Dzydzora explains, “Kids need to know how to protect themselves physically. If they are aware of the tactics used by abductors and are trained to protect themselves, they will have a fighting chance against abduction.”
As parents themselves; the Dzydzora’s know the importance of teaching children to be safe. They have been teaching the art of Isshinryu Karate for over 27 years. Orest Dzydzora is a 6th Degree Black Belt and is well-known for his expertise in Kata (forms). He has competed in various competitions throughout his career within the nationwide area. He has studied Isshinryu Karate in depth along with other forms of martial arts such as; Khali, Aikido, Krav Maga, Tai Chi and Okinawan Kobudo. Lucy Dzydzora is a 3rd Degree Black Belt and has also competed throughout the nationwide area. She was the first woman in her dojo to earn the rank of San-Dan (3rd Degree Black Belt).
The Dzydzora’s focus is clear; to protect children everywhere against the dangers of abduction. They’re passionate about teaching martial arts as self defense and dedicated to providing a safe enviorment for Bayonne’s community of children. So dedicated are they, that earlier this year they presented their C.A.P.S. program to Mayor Mark Smith and the Bayonne Board of Education. Orest Dzydora explains, “We felt the need to teach children how to see danger and to think. We hope to make them aware that although someone made look like a good person, the danger can always be there.”
To date the program has been widely accepted by many parents who have looked to the Dzydzora’s for guidance and support. One of the parents, Debbie Linnus who has her young 6 year old daughter in the program explains, “This is a wonderful program, especially the way it’s presented. My daughter loves it and is learning so much. She never wants to miss a class. The Dzydzora’s are amazing with the children!”
Some of the classes are geared at actual reality type situations and the students are involved with interactive role playing. Loreto Martinez, a mental health specialist has participated and helped with the interactive role-playing. She began by playing the part of a stranger asking for help; during the class she was able to see for herself what could happen. She explains, “It’s important for kids to be aware, most children are oblivious to the dangers. This program gives parent’s piece of mind. It was great to be able to participate and to be on the other side of the coin and observe. I wish more children would be exposed to this program. Abduction is a worldwide problem, it can happen anywhere, so the C.A.P.S. program is definitely a way to fight back.”
In the fall of this year the Dzydora’s will work on a volunteer basis with the Bayonne Board of Education to present a one day seminar to all Bayonne Public schools. They’re primary goal is to; educate all of the community’s children, teachers and school faculty as to the prevention of child abduction.
Their goals as well as their focus is clear, too educate children, parents and teachers to the dangers and prevention of child abduction and to show them that self defense is the key to their safety. To learn more about “The Karate Kids” and their C.A.P.S. program visit their website at www.thekaratekids.org or call (973) 687-1072. Also you can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Karate Kids also offer the following classes; Bully-Proofing, Women’s Self Defense, Senior Self Defense, and private lessons; for men, women, children, including children with special needs. They are also available for seminars for any school, group or organization. Give them a call at (973) 687-1072 and invest in your child’s safety and your piece of mind.