A local woman is spearheading a group designed to help women feel more at ease with learning about and safely handling firearms.
Becky Frame, of Brookville, has started the local chapter of The Well Armed Woman, a free educational program strictly for women to help teach them about guns. The Well Armed Woman will give women of all experience levels the opportunity to be introduced to issues important to women shooters, learn safe gun handling skills and train together.
“These meetings are structured to just be general information sessions,” Frame said. “We’re not offering any kind of NRA certification or CCW permits. This is just a way to get the basic facts out to a portion of the population that needs to learn about guns and self-defense but maybe has not always had the chance before.
Frame said that having a separate organization for women is necessary because gun groups are often very male-centric.
“I think woman can feel intimidated because the world of firearms tends to be a man’s world,” Frame said. “The goal of The Well Armed Woman classes are to structure them in a way to make women feel comfortable. Nobody needs to feel like they are asking a stupid question. Some people coming here have been victims and may feel uncomfortable. They need to have a place where they can feel like they can protect themselves and aren’t vulnerable.”
Despite operating strictly through Facebook and flyers at a few gun ranges, Frame said the first class, held in February, was well-attended as 41 women from as far away as central Indiana traveled to Fairborn for the event. Frame said the class had a huge age-range as well, with woman as young as 23 and as old as 76.
Frame, who specializes in pistol knowledge, said she plans to bring in experts in rifles, shotguns and unarmed self-defense to future meetings. Attendees at the meetings receive informal lectures and question-and-answer periods as well as time on the shooting range. Participants have to pay any applicable range fees and costs of ammunition or ﬁrearm rentals.
The Well Armed Woman was begun in Phoenix, Arizona, by Carrie Lightfoot. Lightfoot and Frame met over the internet and Lightfoot asked Frame to start a chapter of the group in the Dayton region.
“There just wasn’t a lot of support and information about guns directed at women out there,” Frame said. “Our goal is to change that.”
The Well Armed Woman meets on the fourth Saturday of every month at the Fox Shooting Loft, 8300 Dayton Springfield Road in Fairborn. For more information, contact Frame at DayOH-TWAW@live.com or go to www.thewellarmedwoman.com. Both the national organization and the North Dayton chapter have pages on Facebook.