Guardian Girls

Successful year of presentation of Guardian Girls Karate Project concludes in Budapest


Successful year of presentation of Guardian Girls Karate Project concludes in Budapest

Karate’s initiative against Gender-Based Violence, the “Guardian Girls Global Karate Project” concluded its first year of presentations with a series of successful activities in Budapest (Hungary) during the 2023 World Senior Championships.

An extraordinary showcase of Karate’s contribution to eradicating gender-based violence, the “Guardian Girls Karate Project” has demonstrated the many values of the sport and Karate’s commitment towards gender equality and women’s rights.

The final event of the year was held in Budapest, and it wrapped up a season of presentations that were previously held in Cairo, Guadalajara, Rabat, Fukuoka, and Dublin.


The first activity of the “Guardian Girls Karate Project” in Budapest took place at the official residence of the Ambassador of Japan to Hungary.

Ambassador Masato Otaka welcomed the presentation and reception that also had the participation of WKF President Antonio Espinós, the President of the Hungarian Karate Federation Janos Meszaros, WKF Secretary General Toshihisa Nagura, WKF Vice Presidents Jose Garcia Maañon, Nasser Alrazooqi, and Bechir Cherif, all the members of the WKF Executive Committee, and the President of KIF Nia Lyte, among many other officials. 

Hungarian Karate Federation President Janos Meszaros 


“Karate is a Japanese discipline that teaches the way of life, how to find your path in life, and how to help others; this is the very foundation of the Karate philosophy. To see that there are hundreds of people around the world joining the Karate community makes us very pleased,” said Ambassador Masato Otaka.

“I hope that many women around the world will be involved in this initiative of Guardian Girls Karate. I hope that Karate will become even more global and universal,” added Mr Otaka who pointed out Karate’s popularity in Hungary.  

“Activities like this one are part of the budo of Karate, part of what makes Karate a great discipline,” said Hungarian Karate Federation president Janos Meszaros who took time to express his excitement about the success of the World Championships in Budapest.

Ambassador of Japan to Hungary Masato Otaka 


“We completed the first year of our project together with our partners, UNFPA and KIF, and it has been a fantastic adventure. We have been living challenging times around this project, but we have been able to overcome these challenges thanks to the big support of the whole Karate community around the world and the generosity of some of the members of the World Karate Federation who made it possible to successfully reach the end of this foundation year of the program and to start the new year with enthusiasm,” said WKF President Antonio Espinós who particularly pointed out the generosity of WKF Vice President Nasser Alrazooqi for his financial contribution to the success of the programme.

“The Guardian Girls Karate Project is a decisive step in the integration of our sport into society, and we have big hopes for this project. I am sure that the contribution of this programme to fight gender-based violence will continue to be very important,” Mr Espinós added.

After the welcoming speeches, the outline of the project was introduced by the President of KIF Nia Lyte who highlighted the benefits of Karate. “I am not a karateka myself; my husband (actor Shin Koyamada) is, but I have had the opportunity to learn how much karate can help women in the seminars that we have done around the world this year,” she said.

WKF President Antonio Espinós 



A group of around 30 women from the Budapest area gathered at Papp Laszlo Arena to participate in a seminar on women’s self-defence, as the second activity of the “Guardian Girls Karate project” in the capital of Hungary.

Headed by WKF Instructor Teresa Garcia, the seminar was organised with the cooperation of the Hungarian Karate Federation and the assistance of local instructor Veronika Dora Bucs-Tonk.

WKF Instructors Amy Connell and Eimear Porter also attended the seminar, which showcased Karate’s efficiency against the most common situations of Gender-Based Violence.


The central tatami at Papp Laszlo Arena in Budapest during the finals of the last day of the 2023 World Senior Championships was the stage where the demonstration of self-defence techniques of the “Guardian Girls Karate” project was held.

Live for a worldwide viewing audience on hundreds of platforms around the world, the showcase of techniques wrapped up the activities of the project in Budapest. The demonstration was performed by WKF Instructor Teresa Garcia and local instructor Veronika Dora Bucs-Tonk, with the cooperation of Laszlo Krajcsi and Botond Boroczi.

Created by UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, the Koyamada International Foundation (KIF) and the World Karate Federation (WKF), the Guardian Girls Global Karate Project aims to promote gender equality and empower women and girls to defend themselves from all forms of Gender-Based Violence through Karate training.

 Learn More about the Guardian Girls Karate initiative HERE

 (Top picture: From left to right: WKF General Secretary Toshihisa Nagura, President of the Hungarian Karate Federation Janos Meszaros, Ambassador of Japan to Hungary Masato Otaka, WKF President Antonio Espinós, WKF Vice President Nasser Alrazooqi, and President of KIF Nia Lyte)