Leslie Henry
Leslie Henry's Fundraiser

Teaches self defense skills to victims of violence, homeless youth, and the disabled

Our annual fundraiser supports scholarships for tuition assistance, our Adapted Seido Karate program, our self-defense classes, and Violence Prevention outreach in the community.

$275 towards $1,000

In April of 2016, I was assaulted by a homeless person I was serving through volunteer work. The incident affected me in many ways, I was afraid, jumpy, angry, sad, and hurt.This event shook me to the core. I had absolutely no confidence in the fact that I could protect myself or my wife.

A good friend of mine, who is a social worker, suggested two things to help me heal, one of them being to check out Thousand Waves. She told me that Thousand Waves was holding a self-defense class on the weekend of Pride and suggested I attend, which I did. Attending that class set me on the path to healing. I enjoyed so much of what I learned on that day that I took advantage of the offer to sign up for a trial class. Through that class I decided to actually join Thousand Waves. Over the last eight months I have learned skills that will aid me in violence prevention and protection. Without that self defense class, learning karate, and psychological counseling I would have not begun the journey of healing, regaining confidence, and releasing some fear. I am one of hundreds of people that Thousands Waves has served and helped.

Thousand Waves is a mission-driven not-for-profit in the city of Chicago that has been active in the community for over 32 years with a mission to foster fitness, healing, empowerment, and peacemaking.

Spirit Challenge Fundraiser supports Thousand Waves' work in three critical areas:

  • Scholarships, which provide funding for children and adults who wouldn't otherwise be able to study karate or self-defense.
  • Adapted Seido Karate (ASK), a partnership with RIC that provides karate for youth with disabilities.
  • Self-Defense/Violence Prevention, which provides Self-defense and Bystander Intervention workshops and courses all over the city.

Thousand Waves' name comes from the Japanese saying, "One wave sets thousands in motion." Just one donation will go a long way to helping me meet my goal for Thousand Waves. Thank you for your support!