Our Mission & Values

Culture of Safety is a values-led and mission-driven organization.  All of the programming we offer is in service to our mission, and is guided by our values.


The mission of Culture of Safety is to create a community space where members are safe, strong, and able to pursue personal growth towards a more fulfilling life, however they define it.


  • Integrity Our behaviors are congruent with our words
  • Equity We ensure that everyone has access to Culture of Safety, and work to reduce financial, social, physical, and other barriers
  • Authenticity We cultivate the courage to show up with our whole selves
  • Inclusion We welcome everyone, especially those who are different than us

The Jin Sei Ryu Karate-Do Dojo Kun

As the Chicago branch of Jin Sei Ryu Karate-Do International, we also uphold the Jin Sei Ryu Dojo Kun, or School Rules.

  • We practice karate-do seriously, with a strong spirit, pure heart, and open mind.
  • We act with kindness, honesty, respect and patience
  • We accept others regardless of their age, physical capabilities, gender or personal belief
  • We strive to overcome our personal challenges and wholeheartedly support others through theirs
  • We apply our training to other areas of our daily lives
  • We honor our families, serve our communities and wider society
  • We pursue self-improvement tirelessly and humbly regardless of our age, rank or experience

Our Commitment to Financial Equity

Equity is one of the guiding values of Culture of Safety.  Part of our commitment to equity means that we are committed to bringing the skills we have to share to everyone, regardless of ability to pay.    We know that those who have the financial means will pay our full rate, and those who don’t will pay what they can.  That’s why our public trainings always list more than one price.  As an organization dedicated to helping people find their power, we know we must trust them to pay what they can.

How we create cultures of safety in our programming

We support all members of the LGBTQIAA++ community.  We will always offer our pronouns and ask you yours. We make no assumptions of gender or sexual orientation. For more on pronouns, see this useful handout created by the NWMAF.


Daniel Quasar redesigns LGBT Rainbow Flag to be more inclusive    


We support people from “all ages and stages.” When working with children,  we strive to keep groups small and age-congruent so that our trainings will remain interactive, developmentally-appropriate, and maximally impactful. When working with folks with older or injured bodies,  we recognize the importance of prioritizing time for bodily rest in between activities to allow the body to better adjust to new movement.  Every participant is encouraged to take breaks as needed, to learn by watching when that feels safest (physically or emotionally), and to listen to the needs of their body.
We support people who live with physical and/or cognitive disabilities.  Every person gets to defend themselves with the body they have– not the body society wants them to have. Safety is not a one-size-fits-all. We work with each participant to help them find the natural strengths of their bodies and minds to maximize their safety.  If something doesn’t work for your body, we can almost anyways find another way to accomplish the same goal.
We support survivors of trauma and people who live with mental illness. Our trainings are trauma-aware and reject the stigma that society places on people who live with mental illness.  We know that people who live with mental illness are at a higher risk of experiencing violence,  and at no higher risk of committing violence. Accordingly,  we seek to dismantle stereotypes and stigmas associated with mental illness. We reject the assumption that neurotypicality is a prerequisite for safety or acceptance and strive to meet each participant where they are on the spectra of neurodiversity.
We support people regardless of country of origin or immigration status. We practice cultural humility in our trainings.  Because we know that everyone’s lived experience is different, our trainings are always a collaborative process between us and the participants.



We recognize that we alone may not always have the expertise to support people from all walks of life. We commit to the practice of cultural humility, of always seeking to understand better rather than to make assumptions.  We commit to seeking out professional development to support us in ways that help us better support our value of diversity and inclusivity.  As part of this path of growth,  we commit to welcoming and encouraging feedback from our participants (and potential participants)  that will make our trainings supportive for each person.  And, as our organization grows,  we commit to hiring those with the expertise and lived experiences we lack so that we can model the diversity and inclusivity that we believe will truly create a culture of safety for all people.
We know that we may not always get it right and strive to be open to feedback.  For our karate school, we have created policies to ensure that there are avenues available to our members if we get it wrong.