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Helping girls build confidence and become leaders

A workshop series that is helping at-risk teen girls to make positive choices now has support from Status of Women. 

Young Women of Power (YWOP) offers an interactive, strength-based workshop series called YWOP PivotFWD that empowers girls to make healthier choices for their future.

The six-week workshop for teen girls aged 12-18, which runs Monday nights, focuses on increasing school attendance, reducing or preventing criminal activity, developing healthy friendships, boosting self-image and inspiring leadership.

“These workshops are so important in helping girls discover their strengths, feel confident in who they are and do better in school. Our girls are our future, and I’m proud to offer support to teens who need it to set them up for success.”

Stephanie McLean, Minister of Status of Women

The workshops have also served as a court-diversion program in Calgary. Since the workshops began more than five years ago, YWOP says 234 young women have been diverted to the program rather than being charged with a criminal offence. The curriculum has now expanded beyond the criminal justice system to schools, the non-profit sector and various faith communities, with more than 550 graduates.

“Confidence is key in empowering teen girls to make positive choices and see their greatness. With this funding, we will be able to transform girl culture throughout Alberta by providing communities with resources that will establish a nurturing environment where young women are encouraged to lead, work together, enforce healthy boundaries and succeed personally and professionally.”

Alison Springer, founder and executive director, Young Women in Power

“Thank you for every session; it changed me. At home, treating people with respect. Being kind, not drinking because… I value my future and for sure respect others. I have better self-esteem for myself. I enjoyed coming to every session because the speakers are wonderful and it’s inspirational.”

Past workshop participant, age 15

YWOP will use the $27,810 grant from Status of Women to deliver the workshops and create a program curriculum that can be used provincewide by local community workers and educators.

About Status of Women grants

Status of Women’s first-ever grant program funds 33 innovative projects by not-for-profit and charitable organizations for a total of $1.5 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year.

Successful projects, such as Young Women of Power’s PivotFWD workshops, work to help women get good jobs and training, increase the number of women in leadership roles and reduce violence against women and girls.

Status of Women is accepting applications for 2017-18 grants until Jan. 10, 2018. 


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