of Greater Santa Barbara

Impact Story

Helen & Loraine: Active and Strong Sisters


Helen and Loraine are sisters who have both attended Girls Inc. for three years. It was at Girls Inc. that both girls discovered how much they like being active and how to take care of their bodies. For the first time, the sisters participated on golf and basketball teams, in the surf group, and in classes like yoga, dance, and running club. In each of these Strong classes, they have also learned how important it is to eat healthy to take care of their bodies and fuel their minds.

“My favorite class at Girls Inc. has been surf,” says Loraine, age 9. “Before Girls Inc. I had never tried surfing. Even though I was scared to try it, I didn’t want to miss out on this opportunity. The first quarter was still scary and hard but the staff and other girls in class really helped me not be as scared. Then after a year of surfing, I felt a lot more comfortable. Now that I have completed my second year, I love going out in the water and jumping on my board.”

The girls’ energy is put to good use in the Girls Inc. kitchen, where they both take cooking classes that teach them how to plan for and prepare healthy meals to nourish their bodies. Their mom likes that Girls Inc. exposes Helen and Loraine to activities like cooking and learning about different cultures that the girls would not normally get in school. She also appreciates the Girls Inc. Growing up Body Basics class.

“As a parent, it can be really difficult to talk to your daughters about the social, emotional, and physical changes they will go through as they grow up. It was so helpful to have Girls Inc. start those conversations and encourage the girls to have further conversations with me at home.”

Helen, age 11, likes the Body Basics class, too. “My favorite activities have been from the Growing Up Body Basics class. In that class I learned about eating healthy, anatomy, the changes I am going to be going through and how to take care of my body.”

The girls put their love for activity and movement on display when they both trained for and ran their first 5K races as part of the She.Is.Beautiful event. Proceeds from the race benefit Girls Inc. of Greater Santa Barbara.

I love that my girls are being given opportunities to do things that I would not normally be able to provide for them. And I love that the girls have found their passions for being active. They love to do anything that involves movement and I like that Girls Inc. teaches them how to use their high energy in a positive way.