“Inspiring girls to be strong, smart and bold!”
When you are trying to get the attention of approximately 180-200 girls between the ages of 5-14 on any given day at Girls, Inc., you will often hear the leaders proclaim “Girls? Girls? Girls?” to which the girls quickly respond “Yes! Yes! Yes!” Then all eyes and ears are focused on the information to come. I love it and I love this organization!
I had heard so much about Girls, Inc. about two years ago but could not find one in the Baltimore region. I was delighted to learn that there was one in Sarasota, Florida not too far from our new home. I could not wait to get settled and become an active volunteer. Given its motto “inspiring girls to be strong, smart and bold” how could you not love it!
The girls come from all walks of life. There is a fee for attending the program but with the help of donors, many girls attend either on full scholarships or with minimal payments based on their family income. All are welcome and all are represented. At the Sarasota Girls, Inc., there is a lot of diversity in ethnicity and income levels. The older girls support and engage with the younger girls so much so that many of the girls who leave the program as participants return later to volunteer.
They very much need and welcome volunteers. There is and should be diversity in the volunteers as well so that the girls can be inspired and encouraged to see themselves and the possibilities for their lives. Volunteers range from high school students to grandmothers, mothers and big sisters as well as professionals like business owners, lawyers, engineers, and artists like dancers, actors, musicians singers. The program focuses on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) but also covers creative arts and athletics. There is so much to do and learn and all of it while learning life skills, building confidence, having fun and making friends.
Do you have a Girls, Inc. near you? If so, check it out and maybe it will draw you in as it has with me. I love my first new friends in Sarasota – most of them under the age of 12.
Yes! Yes! Yes!