Thirteen students at East Layton Elementary proudly accepted graduation certificates today from the Elizabeth Smart Foundation????????s aggression- and abduction-resistance training partner, radKIDS.
That was right after they kicked, hammered, peppered and head-butted Wes McKinney, the Layton Police Detective in the big, padded red suit, yelling ??????GET BACK!?????? As impressive as that was, it????????s important to note that the program stresses avoiding potential danger. Fighting is only for when physical danger cannot be avoided.
Graduation comes on the last day of the FREE four-day training, which includes water, fire and street safety in 2 ???? hour sessions. The kids also learn that it????????s important to tell a trusted adult if another adult does something bad.
Here????????s what Elizabeth Smart has to say about radKIDS (elizabethsmartfoundation.org):
Too many families experience the nightmare of having a child go missing. I know what it is like to be that child. I know what it is like to think that one false move may lead to not only your own death but the death of family members as well.
Nobody can ever blame a child for their actions when they are being threatened, bullied, forced, or coerced into doing something unthinkable. That is why the ??????Elizabeth Smart Foundation?????? was created, because what if we could prevent future crimes against children? Wouldn????????t it be worth it to do everything to bring home that one child?
What if you were that one child?
Or what if it was you who helped prevent/bring home that one child?
We do have options. radKIDS is a program that was created not to react to a heinous crime committed against a child, but to prevent crimes from happening to children. There are many incredible people who devote much of their time, energy, and resources to going out and hunting down child perpetrators. The ??????Internet Crimes Against Children?????? task force are some of those people. How can we afford to not support those who stand as guardians and rescuers, who do everything they can to prevent crimes and protect our children? Every child in the world deserves to have a life without abuse in any form. Children are the future.
Here????????s the radKIDS philosophy from www.radkids.org:
Is it not time to actually teach, train and empower our children with the skills they need to be safer in this world rather than tell them what we hope they will do when they meet up with anyone trying to hurt them?
Would we train our children how to swim by telling them how in the living room,
then throwing them in the water?
Obviously not, so then why don’t we teach/train our children how to live safer in their world today by empowering them with real skills and a positive mindset?
Teach not tell, radKIDS does just that.
A radKIDS attitude, when empowered with some realistic and instinctive skills to escape violence or harm is: “HOW DARE YOU TOUCH ME!” rather than the child who is told what to do and in danger yells, “HELP ME, HELP ME.” Which mindset do we want our children to have?
Detectives Jason Nordgren and Kyle Williams and Wes McKinney–the guy in the red suit– conducted the radKIDS program at East Layton. All three are part of Layton City????????s police force and are also onsite School Resource Officers at junior high schools in Layton. They are experienced in working with kids, and it shows. Several East Layton kids who started radKIDS as quiet and shy were able to shout and defend themselves by graduation day.
Layton City Police have trained approximately 300 kids age 7 to 12 so far, and they????????ll continue all summer. Next week, the training is at Whitesides Elementary. For the complete schedule and to register, click HERE or search for radKIDS on Layton City????????s webpage.