Watching girls and women poke seemingly harmless fun at each other may make for hilarious film and TV fodder on hits like Mean Girls and Orange Is the New Black. But the truth is, disrespectful comments can be far less innocuous in the real world, and are something that an overwhelming number of young women confront daily. I Am That Girl's month-long For That Girl campaign, however, is teaching a new crop of leaders to grow into more accepting, positive, and supportive young adults.
Founded in 2008, the nonprofit organization helps young women ages 14 to 22 open a direct, safe dialog on issues that run the gamut from eating disorders, violence, drugs, and teen pregnancy to self-confidence, depression, abuse, and overcoming obstacles. “They talk about everything that’s relevant to what it means to be a girl today—that could be fashion, and beauty, careers and relationships, sex and drugs, local issues, global issues, everything you can imagine in between,” says Emily Greener, co-founder and CEO of I Am That Girl.
The organization, which has received support from stars like Sophia Bush, Emmanuelle Chriqui, and Stacy London, successfully grants girls the opportunity to meet similar-minded friends, participate in leadership and training programs, gain access to mentors, and receive positive reinforcement to be themselves. “It’s a community of girls and guys with shared values. They kind of have this space once a week that is redefining culture amongst girls,” Greener added.
I Am That Girl is now aiming to extend its reach with an effort to raise $260,000 to fund 4,000 of its members for a full year of impactful programming with its For That Girl campaign, launching today. By simply donating $65, you’ll have a chance to sponsor a girl and improve her overall well-being through the program’s initiatives and its shared online community, which boasts exclusive content and empowering messages daily.
So why is the organization so special to Greener? “While I show up to a place to try and teach these girls something, 100-percent of the time they end up teaching me something as well. It’s allowed me to understand the point of life, which is connecting to myself, connecting to others, and connecting to the world” she says. Head over to iamthatgirl.com to learn more and donate now.