Safety Speech Prepares Women for Dangers

RENO, Nev. A special women's safety class was held Tuesday at the Sierra Health Mart Pharmacy, to give women a better sense of defense options available.

What would you do if someone came up and attacked you? Would you be prepared?

For many women it's a constant worry.

"I bar tend in Reno, and working in the nightclub, you kind of have to be very welcoming, friendly, flirtatious," Brittany McLean said. "That can be perceived wrong. So I'm always afraid someone's going to say 'you flirted with me' and wait for me after work and try to force themselves on me."

McLean attended the speech with her mother, who says knowing her daughter works until the early hours of the morning is discomforting.

"You always want to believe they're safe, but you never know for sure," Linda McLean said.

The safety speech was put on by Vicki Welsher, founder of the Women's Shooting Academy, and she wasn't afraid to bring the fear.

"I'm going to hold this knife up and wield it around a little bit, because I want you to look at it, and imagine just for a second what you would do," Kawelmacher told the crowd.

She says her goal wasn't to leave the women scared, but rather show them the real dangers, and empower them to confront them.

Something she taught her daughter to do, and those skills saved her life.

"It was a beautiful day here in Northern Nevada, and basically two men came up to her, and attempted to abduct her," Kawelmacher said. "She was ten years old, and she got away."

Since then Kawelmacher has been teaching women to defend themselves. She told the women at the speech, knowing your options helps keep you one step ahead of a possible attacker.

She also advocated arming yourself with any or all weapons.

"Pepper spray, taser, knife, gun, whatever works," she said. "The biggest thing I want to tell them is they're in charge and they own their safety."

The Women's Shooting Academy offers a wide variety of gun courses for women. Anywhere from Introduction the Handguns to concealed carry classes. For more information on the classes visit