LillyGirls Inc. Strong, Healthy Relationships programs teach girls how to handle the various challenges associated with friendships, bullying, self-esteem, puberty, and peer pressure.

The Strong program suite including Work it Out and Girls Inc. Preventing Adolescent Pregnancy have been sponsored by a three-year, $300,000 grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. since April 2013.

The generous funding from Lilly Endowment supports our efforts to address the social and emotional challenges that undermine girls’ academic successes. For example, Work It Out deals with the challenges associated with peer relationships by teaching girls about respect, empathy, and fairness and how to use those tools to resolve conflicts and build friendships. Preventing Adolescent Pregnancy (PAP) prepares girls for the emotional challenges associated with growing up and maturing by teaching them about their bodies, puberty, and female health in general.

The impact and importance of Strong programs has been highlighted by feedback from our best advocates: girls. When asked the most important lesson they learned in a Girls Inc. Strong program, girls responded:

• “Respect people, and before you do something mean to someone, think about how they might feel.”
• “We are all the same, and we must learn to forgive.”
• “I learned in Girls Inc. how to avoid bad relationships and how to be assertive.”
• “I learned that being straight forward when you don’t want to have sex is okay.”

Thank you to Lilly Endowment for its generous support of our Strong programs. We remain deeply grateful for their continued support, including funding that allowed us to successfully take our programs to more girls across the community.