It's hard to believe that we have been working from home for a month now. The impact we will be feeling for months or years to come is something we have to acknowledge and process. For ABF, that means better understanding the needs of our girls, mapping our program path through recovery and re-imagining what the future holds for us all.

We know that we will continue to support girls in their development of key skills like confidence, self-esteem, and resiliency. Recently we shared an opportunity for our ABF Trailblazers to participate in an online leadership series through Empower Leadership Academy, and the feedback was amazing. One mom shared that, “ ….My daughter has participated in two so far and she loves them. The coach is so kind and energetic and fills the girls up with encouragement and positive messages. It's such a blessing during this hard time. Thank you for sharing it!

How are we supporting girls?

We have partnered with Team Women and Empower to do it again! We will be providing funding for some of our ABF Trailblazers to participate in the Empower Leadership @Home Certification Program. Participants will have the opportunity to get certified in resilience, confidence, mental wellness or leadership through weekly livestreams that include exercises, worksheets and interactive activities. You can find more information about the program here .

If you missed it, on April 22nd we held our first StoryShare event featuring our ABF Trailblazers. The day was a great success, raising over $12,000 with $25,000 in matching funds ($37,000 total!)– to all of you that participated, THANK YOU ! If you weren’t able to join us, please visit our ABF StoryShare playlist on our YouTube channel – we encourage you to comment on the video(s) that resonate the most with you as you share your favorites with others in your network.

With most graduation ceremonies cancelled, we are thinking about the achievements of our Class of 2020 grads. For example, Sydney Jackson, LMP '18, won top honors for the Athena Award! Named for the Greek Goddess of Wisdom and Skills, this award recognizes female athletes who are seniors in high school. Sydney is accomplished in basketball and track & field, as well as a member of the National Honor Society. She plans to continue track & field at Concordia University in St. Paul, and study nursing and Spanish.

We want to highlight the accomplishments of our graduates, celebrating their resilience and tenacity! If you are connected to any ABF Trailblazers graduating from 8th grade, high school or college please encourage them, their parents or their mentors to complete this survey on or before 5:00 p.m. CST on June 1, 2020!

You can help!

Wondering how you can help? There is still time for you to make your gift by participating in #GiveAtHomeMN May 1-8. Our page is ready for you to make your gift, or you can create your own fundraiser benefiting ABF. This special campaign is meant to be a fun event encouraging philanthropy and providing hourly and daily bonus grants for nonprofits totaling more than $68,000!

Thank you for being such a valuable member of the ABF community. With your help Minnesota girls will reach a brighter day, and we hope you know how essential you are to ensuring a strong future for all of us.


Sara Fenlason
Executive Director, Ann Bancroft Foundation
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