Meet Girls Inc. Volunteers!
Favorite thing to teach
“My favorite part of the programs to teach is when the girls are given scenarios to evaluate and find a solution. It’s always fun to see the girls get excited and open up about how the character should have acted. The girls always seem more outgoing when they are talking about the scenarios and they often begin to apply it to their own lives.”
Did you notice a change in the girls’ behavior as your class went on?
“The girls began to cross grade boundaries and interact with girls they typically didn’t talk to as they got more accustomed to the routine and the program. In one of the sessions we had both six and seventh graders. In the beginning, the sixth graders were quiet and shy and the seventh graders were dominant in the conversations. By week six, the girls were all asking each other questions and wanted to get to know each other regardless of their grade.”
Advice for prospective Volunteer Program Facilitators:
“Always pay attention to the cues the girls are giving you during the session and be flexible enough to go with those cues. If they grasp on to particular topics and engage in them more than others, don’t be afraid to spend a little more time with them on the topics they’re opening up about.”
Favorite thing to teach
“I love teaching interactive sessions where the girls are moving around and engaging with each other. It’s great to watch them ask each other challenging questions and think about how to respond. Their reactions to what they hear are enlightening -especially when they learn something about their peers they didn’t know before or wouldn’t have thought to ask about. These are moments where I can see the girls challenging their boundaries and opening themselves to new and deeper friendships.”
Experience with your co-facilitators
“My co-facilitators have been a big part of why I keep coming back to Girls Inc. Of course the girls are the driving motivation, but to meet and spend a short amount of time with great women co-facilitators has really been helpful in making the experience truly enjoyable. Between the two of us we always figure out how to best manage the classroom and how to tailor our attention to have the best connection with the girls.”
A Girls Inc. memory that stands out
“There was girl in my last program that really impressed my co-facilitator and me because of her maturity and understanding of the intentions behind the Girls Inc. programs. She was helpful and I could tell she was a positive and influential leader amongst her peers. It is because of her we decided to write thank you notes to the girls in that program for their participation and insight. She helped me realize that even though we only spend a short time with the girls, it’s enough to get to know enough about them where we could personally write a note thanking them for their individual qualities. I think if I would have received a note like that at that age, I would have cherished it through my adolescence.”
Why She Volunteers for Girls Inc.
”I have always had a passion for encouraging young women to live out their hopes and dreams independently. Also, I struggled most of my childhood with self-esteem and confidence, and this is a way to give back. Girls Inc. has been a true blessing for me.”
Experience as a Facilitator
”I am very outgoing so this is right up my alley. I am a leader at heart. I love getting excited about a topic, and seeing the girls getting excited about things that are not normally fun and exciting topics, like how to stop bullying. We teach them to say, “Stop that. I don’t like that.” I actually heard a few of the girls use this after class, and I was just elated! You have to have some patience, but it is moments like that, that make it ALL worth it.”
A Girls Inc. Memory that Stands Out
“I had the opportunity to teach the same girls two sessions in a row and all of those girls stood out. It was so neat building a relationship with them. The girls are at many different levels, emotionally, academically, and physically and it is nice to see how they all progress. There is one girl in particular that stood out in those sessions. She was disruptive sometimes and spoke out of turn. However, I have never seen a girl SO excited to be in Girls Inc., wanting so badly to participate, and just soaking up the lesson. She was a great helper, as most of the girls are, but something about her personality just made me laugh and smile. She always said “Heyyyy Misssss Julie” and she is someone who made MY day!”