Dec 30, 2020

Your Investment at Work: Girls Inc. Update

Thanks to your support, Girls Inc. works hard every day to elevate the voices of girls, to bring their needs to the attention of policy makers, and to tackle the societal barriers that stand in the way of their success.

Not only do we advocate on behalf of girls, but we also give girls opportunities to discover their voices and lead advocacy efforts in their own communities. We help girls identify the issues they care about most, research possible solutions, and take steps to make their vision a reality. 

This summer, a group of Girls Inc. girls and alumnae in Carpinteria, CA petitioned to make their high school’s curriculum more inclusive and culturally diverse. Despite some initial resistance, the girls persisted and convinced the school board to approve a new ethnic literature course. Ana, a Girls Inc. of Carpinteria alumna and National Scholar, said: “I grew up for 12 years with Girls Inc., and I now see myself using the advocacy skills that I learned throughout my time there.”

Learning to identify and advocate for their views and their communities is not unique to the girls in Carpinteria—it’s an essential part of something we call the Girls Inc. Experience. In fact, the American Institutes for Research recently found that Girls Inc. girls are more likely than their peers to exhibit strong leadership skills and see themselves as leaders, to believe in their ability to contribute in their community, and to stand up for fairness and their own beliefs.

As a young woman, I went to law school because I wanted to make the world a better place. What I find so gratifying about my work at Girls Inc. is the opportunity to advocate for policy and culture change while also inspiring the next generation of leaders and helping them to be civically engaged.

When you support Girls Inc., you are investing in girls’ potential to advance change for themselves, their peers, and future generations of girls. I urge you to make a gift today. With your support, Girls Inc. will continue to advocate for girls and strengthen their capacity to lead. This is what holds the greatest potential for long-term change.

Sincerely,

Lara S. Kaufmann, J.D.

Director of Public Policy

Sep 3, 2020

Girls Inc. Update: Your Investment at Work

Dear Friend,

I’m proud to introduce you to one of this year’s National Scholars, Paola, whose personal essay is attached. In her story, I hope that you will recognize the many ways in which your investment in Girls Inc. translates into evidence-based programs that help girls like Paola develop confidence, define their voices, pursue their academic and career interests, and become advocates in their communities.

This year, 1,173 girls across the Girls Inc. network graduated from high school, and 84 percent are starting college right away. Their achievements are a testament to their hard work and dedication. They also speak to the commitment of Girls Inc. staff and the support girls have received from their families and their communities—including you. Whether these girls are headed to college or taking another path, I know they will fulfill all of the incredible promise that they represent.

While this year’s graduates face a far different future than any of us expected, I believe that they are well equipped to take on the challenges that lay ahead. A recent two-year study by the American Institutes of Research found that, compared to their peers, Girls Inc. girls are more engaged, curious, and self-assured in academic areas and are better prepared for their next steps after high school.

Thanks to your loyal support, Girls Inc. is able to prepare more girls for success in K–12 and beyond. I am deeply grateful for your confidence in Girls Inc., and I look forward to working with you to continue transforming the lives and futures of girls across the U.S. and Canada.

Best wishes,

Stephanie J. Hull, Ph.D.

President and CEO


Attachments:
May 8, 2020

Girls Inc. Update: Your Investment at Work

Sources include a LinkedIn article by Girls Inc.'s President & CEO, Stephanie J. Hull, Ph.D. and a recent proposal.

For more than 150 years, Girls Inc. has worked with girls from some of the most vulnerable demographics, including girls of color and girls who face poverty and other forms of injustice. In fact, Girls Inc. was there for girls whose lives were forever changed by the high mortality rate of the Spanish flu from 1918 to 1920. We made sure that girls who lost family members had the support and tools to lead fulfilling, productive lives.

A century later, we face another global pandemic. We are working to meet the immediate needs of girls and their families. We are also making sure that girls have the tools to cope with the emotional and educational impacts of this crisis, and to emerge as leaders in helping their communities rebuild. 

 

Meeting Girls’ Material Needs

Across the U.S. and Canada, our 79 affiliates are adapting to ensure continuity and agility in the way they serve girls. They have converted in-person learning environments to virtual platforms, coordinated the distribution of food and personal care products, set up emergency childcare for frontline responders, and much more. They are checking in with their girls regularly, providing stability, reassurance, and normalcy. 

 

Stemming Learning Loss

Reading at grade level by the third grade is a critical benchmark in a child’s development, predictive of high school graduation and success later in life. Literacy programming will be more vital than ever as affiliates work to tackle the learning loss that will inevitably follow from school closures. Girls Inc. will build on several years’ momentum by providing affiliates with virtual support to implement quality literacy programming, providing virtual literacy support directly to girls, and continuing to build relationships with schools to reach girls who can benefit from Girls Inc. literacy programming. 

 

Strengthening Trauma-Informed Services

Because the girls we serve are disproportionately negatively affected by COVID-19, Girls Inc. has committed to reinforcing our trauma-informed approach. We are developing resources to support girls who may have lost family members, sheltered in abusive households, suffered food insecurity, or experienced any number of other traumas. Trauma-informed approaches are not designed to treat the effects of trauma, but rather to observe key principles to promote an environment that is responsive to the needs of those affected by trauma. They seek to prevent re-traumatization and to promote recovery and resiliency through trauma-informed service delivery. 

 

Building Girls’ Leadership Capacities

A recent Forbes piece highlighted the correlation between countries succeeding in managing COVID-19 and countries led by women—just one among many arguments for promoting a new generation of women leaders. Many of the girls who will grow up to fill these key roles are girls of color, living with poverty and injustice. 

Girls Inc. is also continuing to advocate with girls and communities for legislation that will help them right now. Advocacy will continue to be crucial as Girls Inc. works to help girls become more civically engaged in an election year, to elevate their voices and strengthen their capacities to lead. 

Girls Inc. believes that every girl we work with, and every choice she makes, has the potential to change the world. As one Girls Inc. alumna put it, “little waves in the ocean caused by young people's movements will add up in momentum and cause something worth recognition.” That is true of your support, too. Thank you for recognizing girls’ leadership potential, and helping them to become the leaders they were born to be.

 
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