This blog was originally posted on girlsinc.org by Stephanie J. Hull, President and CEO of the Girls Inc. National Organization.
As we look to the new year, you can help Girls Inc. realize the future we hope to see for all girls. I invite you to adopt our 2021 wish list:
I wish more girls felt inspired to lead.
Girls often face stereotypes that tell them that they cannot be effective leaders, and that leaders don’t look like them. Fortunately, this is changing. At Girls Inc., girls have the opportunity to develop leadership skills in a pro-girl environment and be leaders in their communities.
I wish more girls were prepared for the career they want.
As students catch up following the learning loss caused by the pandemic’s disruptions, we wish for more girls to develop the academic and life skills that prepare them for interesting work and economic independence. 90% of Girls Inc. girls plan to attend college and 85% know what education or training they need for the career they want.
I wish more girls were equipped for a future of good health.
Girls’ confidence to lead rests on the foundation of their wellbeing. Girls Inc. is dedicated to making sure girls have the tools to be active participants in every aspect of their health—taking care of their mental health, maintaining healthy relationships, learning about nutrition and exercise, abstaining from substance use, developing a positive self-image, and more.
I wish more girls had the benefit of positive mentoring relationships.
When girls have models of success, robust peer networks, and safe environments, they create positive relationships and thrive. Compared to their peers, girls who have had the mentoring relationships that Girls Inc. provides are more likely to see adults as allies, as well as to see themselves as leaders.
I wish more girls could have the Girls Inc. Experience.
Nearly one in six American children is currently experiencing poverty, and millions of girls do not have access to the supports and services they need to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers. This year, Girls Inc. provided a safe, supportive, pro-girl environment for 134,000 girls in more than 350 cities across the U.S. and Canada. At the heart of Girls Inc. is a comprehensive approach to whole girl development, which equips girls to grow up confident, healthy, educated, and independent.
We are committed to bringing Girls Inc.’s comprehensive approach to girl development to more girls than ever. A recent study by the American Institutes of Research found that Girls Inc. girls have an advantage over their peers in 20 impact areas. They are significantly more likely to be engaged in school, exhibit strong leadership skills, and have strong, positive relationships with adults.