On the heels of our 2-week leadership camp last summer, we challenged a group of 14 youth to take ownership of their actions and to make a difference in their community. In less than 3 days, these amazing youth fundraised over $2,000 to host a community feast to feed almost 400 people at Oppenheimer Park!
If the kids can do it, well....so can we, right?
Be comfortable with being uncomfortable. Challenge yourself to step out. JUST DO IT!
There were doubters who said it was a great concept but no way this could be done. There were obstacles left, right and center from the beginning. But I’ve heard it all before. The vision was just too strong to ignore this time. I’m too stubborn. Plus we’ve got an unbelievable crew of mentors willing to sacrifice countless hours. So here we go. Close your eyes, stop thinking about it and just take that LEAP of FAITH...
That's how Girls Who LEAP came alive; out of the abyss from five years of procrastination. Now to clarify, what we're doing with the girls is nothing new. Girls Who LEAP is simply formalizing all the little things that we already do with our girls…just off the side of our desks or on the court or whenever we have to put out fires off the court.
But our youth deserves better! They deserve our undivided attention.
They deserve intentionality. They deserve our best.
To be honest, you put yourself out there and hope for the best. We really had no idea how many girls would show up for our first POWER weekend at Hootsuite. I would have been happy if we had 30-40 girls wake up early on a Saturday morning to spend eight hours with us. SIXTY-EIGHT GIRLS REGISTERED! We had 64 girls, 10 mentors and 1 elder in attendance!
That leap of faith sure paid off. Our vision fulfilled. With time, that crossover of mentorship between our elementary, high school girls, adult mentors and elders will take root. I just know it.
I'm big on quotes and reflection words. At the end of our weekend session, we circled up again to pass around our talking stick and these reflections from the girls pretty much sum it all for me:
Creative. Involved. Enthusiastic. Teamwork. Fun. Powerful. Strong. Empowering. Togetherness. Perspective. Leadership. Friends. Respect for yourself and others. Unity. Community. Support. Safe Space. Fearless. New People. Enjoyable.
Now you see why we do this...
Looking forward to a great year!
LEADER (to lead) - English
MEANUM (Boss or leader) - Gitxsan
Wii Sm’oogyet (Big Chief) - Tsimshian
OGIMAA (leader, chief, head boss) - Ojibwa
h̓ṃ̓ba (to lead, to be first in a row or list, to be ahead of others) - Heiltsuk
NOGA’AD (teacher/leader) - Kwakwaka'wakw
MOODIH (to lead) - Stellat'en
DE’ENTGWIT (the one who leads) - Nisga'a
CHAAMAPIIAQSUP (woman who lives in a good way, woman moving forward in the right direction) - Hesquaiht
PANPATSALH (the one who goes in front) - Nuxalk
领导 (leader) - Chinese
SIYAM (leader) - Squamish
LÍDER (leader) - Spanish
lãnh đạo (leader) - Vietnamese
리더 (leader) - Korean
リーダー (leader) - Japanese
CHEF (leader) - French
BIRÊVEBIR (leader) - Kurdish
PINUNO (leader) - Filipino