This month is all about gratitude - and at Girls Inc. of Memphis, we're joining Girls Inc. affiliates across the country in expressing our thanks to friends and supporters like YOU!

During this 30 Days of Gratitude  we honor YOUR support -  the support that helps us be the advocates girls in our community need.

Girls Inc. affiliates are guided in their work by the Girls' Bill of Rights. These rights shape our responses to the difficult social issues facing girls and serve as a powerful platform for empowering girls.

In addition to a nod to the 30 Days of Gratitude, below you'll find: a profile of a long-time GIM supporter who played a role in advocating for civil rights right here in Memphis; an overview of what our girls are learning about voting and the political process; and links to local TV coverage of our girls participating in a live stream event with First Lady Michelle Obama that took place on the International Day of the Girl.

None of this happens without YOU! So read on, and let's all be strong advocates for girls!

GIM supporter likes to "make trouble"
And Memphis and Girls Inc. are better because of it
Happy Jones has been passionate in her support of Girls Inc. of Memphis for enough years that she's unclear on when she started. But for her, that's beside the point.
 
"Girls Inc. has been around a while, and it keeps on growing," she says. "Now they've got the farm and all that-it's remarkable. And they need to keep going."
 
Because of supporters like Happy, Girls Inc. of Memphis is going strong, adding a Youth Farm in Frayser and expanding in Memphis, including a brand new presence at Booker T. Washington School.

Happy's life also provides a stellar example of what it means to be strong, smart and bold.

In 1969, the year after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the city's sanitation workers were about to strike again because the city would not recognize their union.
 
"We got a couple of buses and rode around to see the sanitation workers' houses, and how they lived," Happy said. "It was pathetic."
 
The next day, the same group of women went to City Hall to address the mayor and city council. They insisted the issue was poverty and racism, not unions or management.
 
"They folded - right at that meeting," she said. "They recognized the union and we didn't have another strike. THAT'S how powerful the women were who were on that ride."

Read more about Happy's life and her passion for Girls Inc. here. 

Look out world - because She Votes!
Civics curriculum teaches girls about the power of the ballot
Girls Inc. She VotesĀ® is a unique, civic engagement program used by affiliates across the country - including right here at Girls Inc. of Memphis!

Girls at our South Park and LDT Centers have been taking part in activities designed to teach girls at ages 6 to 18 about the importance of civic participation and voting rights, the power of making a difference through government and exercising the right to vote, and the possibility of becoming a candidate for public office themselves.

And since this is a MONUMENTAL presidential election year, the curriculum includes mock elections. Our girls are currently participating in mock elections.

How does this program impact our girls? Here's what they're saying:

Why do you think it is important to vote?
  • "It took a very long time for women to gain the right to vote so we should do it in honor of our ancestors who couldn't vote." -Brittney, 16
  • "Because when you vote you get to speak your opinion."  - India, 10
     
What have you learned about running for office, elections and voting from this program?
  • "I learned that it is very important because one vote can make a difference and it prepares us to vote and run for office in the future." - Desiree, 11
  • "You have to be respectful to the people around you." - Eriuna, 8
  • "THAT IT'S IMPORTANT! ALL VOTES MATTER!" -Jada, 16

Have you shared what you have learned with anyone in your family? Have you encouraged anyone in your family to vote?
  • "I shared it with my mom, dad and grandma. And I encouraged my mom, dad and brother to run for president." - Jamelia, 10

She votes is just one example of the impact the Girls Inc. experience has on equipping our girls to be strong, smart and bold.  

 
Girls around the world deserve to learn
GIM girls join in a global education conversation with the First Lady
On Tuesday, Oct. 11, about 30 Girls Inc. of Memphis girls took part in a live-stream event with First Lady Michelle Obama, to mark the International Day of the Girl.

This was a global, real-time digital conversation with and for girls around the world, featuring the First Lady and Glamour Editor-in-Chief Cindi Leive, focused on the issue of girls' education. 

The event was hosted by Glamour's The Girl Project, which provides access and tools to the more than 50 million girls around the world who aren't getting a quality secondary education. Girls Inc. is proud to partner with The Girl Project as one of six nonprofit partners committed to helping girls overcome obstacles to achieve in school.

Check out the clip above that aired on WREG News Channel 3.

And since we're on a roll, go ahead and check out the clip linked below - from WMC Action News 5!
 
Girls Inc. is grateful for YOU
Thanks for allowing us to advocate for all girls
Along with affiliates across the country, Girls Inc. of Memphis will celebrate 30 Days of Gratitude throughout the month of November.

As part of our celebration, we want you to know that we are grateful for your support.

Your investment made it possible for our girls to grow strong,smart and bold.

Because of you, Girls Inc. of Memphis is stronger financially, smarter in tracking measurable results and bolder by expanding our programs to re-enter 38126! YOU made all that growth possible!

Later this month, we'll start encouraging all our wonderful supporters and the wider Memphis community to help us "Grow A Girl" as Thanksgiving Day gives way to #GivingTuesday. If you'd like to give us a head start on our soon-to-be-announced goal,   you can give now on our website.

On behalf of the girls, families, staff and Board of Directors, we want to say, "THANK YOU!"
Calling all alums!
If you are a Girls Inc. (or Girls Club) of Memphis alum, WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU! Email Barbara Hayes or call her at 901-523-0217 -  share your contact information with her so we can keep you invovled!

Volunteer. Mentor. Donate.
Visit www.girlsincmemphis.org

 
2670 Union Avenue Extended Suite 606, Memphis, TN 38112