To inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold, and to respect themselves and the world around them.
Girls Inc. serves 1,700 girls in 41 schools with trained professionals (often older teens) who mentor them in a safe environment. Girls are inspired to pursue secondary education, develop leadership and decision-making skills, serve their communities, and acquire the ability and wisdom to lead healthy lifestyles.
The Friendly PEERsuasion program is a unique response to the needs of girls because it approaches drug-abuse prevention as a peer issue, using the positive influence of young people modeling healthy behavior.
In two phases, this leadership program allows girls to become leaders and role models to their younger peers in their community, as follows:
Phase I — A series of workshops trains 7th grade girls (ages 11-14) as facilitators with skills such as decision-making, assertiveness, and communication. They also practice walking away from situations where they feel pressured to use alcohol or drugs.
Phase II — The newly trained “PEERsuaders” work with 4th & 5th grade girls (ages 6-10) as role models and leaders, guiding activities that help avoid girls’ use of harmful substances, especially by giving them skills to refuse and walk away.
Girls Inc. has given me the space to be myself, express my thoughts, and a place where I feel supported. Today I am proud to say that I am a confident, strong, smart, and bold leader and that I can accomplish my dreams. I now have the skills to make good choices for myself and accomplish my dream of going to college! Karla, Watsonville, 16