I have only been a facilitator at Broad Street for two weeks, and I am already filled with so much joy and hope for the girls that I work with. Broad Street is a site we have worked with in the past, but the girls still greet us every day with such excitement for our program and mission. As a smaller group, it gives us the chance to really connect with the girls and form individual bonds to specifically learn their strengths, weaknesses, and goals.
At Broad Street, we only work with four girls, yet this does not hinder our activities or our curriculum in any way. Reynada is so full of life and has a great imagination. She participates in every activity, really understands it, and puts her own creative spin on the discussion. Stacey is very bright and acts as a mentor for the other girls in the program. She is insightful and remains positive every day. Gabby is tough and determined. She is never afraid to open up and tell us how she really feels. Finally, Nylisa started off being the quiet girl in the program and being afraid to speak in front of the group. Just last week, however, she was the activity leader, and it really helped her open up, grow, and share her thoughts to everyone in the room.
Following the curriculum, on the first day we completed a goal setting exercise. It was so interesting to see what the girls want to do with their lives, and I feel privileged to help them get there. For example, Stacey wrote that she wants to go to graduate school and continue her education. Most of the girls wrote down that they wanted to help others and finish school!
The following session, we completed an activity that allowed the girls to learn about
the world around them. Social awareness is very important and the girls were shocked to know that most of the world does not speak English, have running water, or have access to the internet. After the activity, the girls were saddened but determined to make a difference. They felt grateful for all the things in their lives and vowed to try to help others. Our most recent activity was conflict resolution, which has proven to be our most difficult challenge yet. The girls are strong and independent and have to deal with conflicts every day. With the activity they learned how to positively and maturely handle challenging situations.
It has only been two weeks, and I already feel a strong bond with each and every girl. They truly are individuals who will become leaders. Watching them grow and develop each day is so exciting. Not only is it exciting for me, but I am so hopeful for the girls and the leaders they will become to truly change our society. As we continue, we will focus on entrepreneurship, public speaking, and critical thinking! It is going to be a great semester!