Nelly Mkonko, Vital Defense's first teacher-in-training

The Next Step for Vital Defense Int’l

Thank you all for supporting our first endeavor into providing knowledge and sustainable human rights work to people in need! We stayed in the community with our students, allowing us to get to know different aspects and members of the society. We approached the volunteer caregivers of Dikgale’s child care centers (rural northern South Africa)

The First Five Weeks: As Exciting As Expected

For the first time, Rehaba moved fast with freedom in her body, energetically hitting target. For the next thirty seconds she laughed loudly, dancing in a way she only would around a group of women. Melita speaks with her eyes. She is focused on the lesson, responsive when concepts click, and sweetly appreciates our initiative

We Asked What They Wanted, and They Had a Lot to Say

This past week we arrived in the communities that we’ve been anticipating meeting for eight months. We barely made it on the rocky dirt roads. Women walked from their communities to attend one of eight meetings held at the centers they created to care for the orphaned and vulnerable children in the neighborhoods. Each two to three

Nutrition Goals in Developed vs Developing Countries

I have been using my Precision Nutrition textbook to prepare for teaching nutrition education to rural villages in South Africa. I chose PN to get my nutrition coaching certification because they dive deep into the physiology of nutrition with the understanding that nothing is the same for all bodies. This is a well-rounded curriculum. Getting

Read where our game changing $1800 donation is going!

One of the cornerstones of this program is now taken care of through a kind-hearted donor. As some of you have guessed, new international programs require loose planning. What is guaranteed is that parts of the equation will shift. Our modest budget outlines the costs of a pilot program, and specifically in relation to this

Our Second Round of Crowdfunding is LIVE

We launched our second round of crowdfunding this week! Please read about us and share with your friends: This work is so important. Every contribution makes a big difference. It may seem intangible that Jazzy and I are going halfway around the world to meet people and improve their lives. Try to think about

VDI is on Facebook

Our Vital Defense Facebook page is live! We have posted many, many more photos showing Jazzy and her old students, more photos of South Africa, and a recent fundraiser. Follow us and give us a like!

Our Call-To-Action Video is Live!

Check out our short Call-To-Action video below that describes our purpose of forming Vital Defense International and our ethos while working with the South African communities.      

The State of Violence in South Africa

What types of violence are experienced by our South African community members? To find out, I researched headlines in the Independent Online, which publishes over 20 newspapers across South Africa. From reading their news feed over the past few months, IOL seems relatively unbiased and willing to report on difficult topics such as rape and

LuchaFIT spreads the word about Vital Defense International

Katherine Shai (Fulp-Allen) has recently featured VDI in her blog, “How Two Women are Teaching South Africans to Fight for their Lives“. She is an incredibly accomplished wrestler and teacher – a 5x National Team Member, 2x Olympic Team Alternate, University World Champion for Team USA in wrestling, 2x Olympic Training Center Resident Athlete, and