As our 16 Summer of Solutions programs kick-off for the summer, we made a video to welcome new participants to Grand Aspirations!
Special shout outs to Full Circles Foundation, LET’S GO Chicago, Build it Up! and Twin Cities Summer of Solutions.
Rebekah Israel was a Summer Fellow with the Raleigh Strong Camps in the summer of 2012. Since then, she has continued to work on issues related to girls’ empowerment, economic justice, and sustainability. In this entry, Rebekah shares with us her recent experiences in South Africa, where she participated in an alternative break trip that focused on gender equality, youth empowerment, and HIV/AIDS. Read on!
Hello world! My name is Rebekah Israel and I had the honor to work with Full Circles
in the summer of 2012. It was an incredible experience and I feel blessed to have met all the girls of the 2012 Strong Camps. Since then, I trekked back to Washington, D.C. where I currently attend graduate school at American University. At American, I spent most of my time this past fall semester planning an alternative break trip that would become instrumental to who I am and what I want to do with my life. Alternative breaks provide students an opportunity to engage in a particular social justice issue either domestically or abroad during one of their breaks from school. “Alt breaks” usually incorporate a service component in which students work on specific project in addition to a learning component that stresses the connection of specific experiences to broader social justice issues.
FCF Joins One Billions Rising along with other Community Organizations
On February 15, Full Circles Foundation joined Cirque de Vol for an event celebrating One Billion Rising, a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls. Seventy-five people came together to enjoy a parade/march in downtown Raleigh, speakers and performers, and a local market and non-profit fair. Part of the donations received throughout the day went to support the 2013 Raleigh Strong Camp! One Billion Rising organizer, Grayson Gant, reports that “on the day of and during the event, people were smiling at us, running through the hills of downtown to join us in our march, stomping their feet and honking their horns at us as we marched by. It was beautiful to see Raleigh come alive and I was proud to see they welcomed our approach to sharing love, joy, and our vision for a beautiful and healthy world!” Grayson says she was particularly touched by “two women who had three children with them who joined our march – one lady asked us what we were marching for and I told her – she proceeded to tell me that last month her ex had severely beaten her and broken her nose in several places- we both teared up and we hugged and I told her I was happy she was with us today- they stayed with us for the rest of the march and for the public speaking events that followed on the lawn. It felt very healing, empowering and intense.”
**Many thanks to Cirque de Vol for including FCF Raleigh in this amazing day of empowerment.**
Community members supporting One Billion Rising in Downtown Raleigh!
Partnership Highlight: Center for Human – Earth Restoration (CHER) and FCF Unite! Continue reading
Generation Know is a program started by the members of Girls For a Change, a non-profit organization sponsored by U by Kotex. The mission of Girls For a Change and Generation Know is to end the taboo about vaginas and women’s health by empowering girls and getting them to talk. As a society we don’t talk about the vagina, we might occasionally refer to it in a degrading way in a rap song or a movie but we don’t really just talk about what it is and what it needs.
This morning through my other job with the a middle school, I viewed a screening of the documentary Finding Kind with over 600 6th and 7th grade students. Briefly, Finding Kind features two mothers and daughters who travel cross-country spreading the importance of being kind to girls from kindergarten to 12th grade. The film focuses on “the girl world,” specifically the ways in which girls bully and mistreat other girls through name-calling, spreading rumors, and essentially, lowering each others self esteem.
As spring arrives, Full Circles Foundation Lexington is gearing up for summer! We getting ready to hire two new Summer Fellows and are preparing our spring fundraiser, which will be held at Lexington’s Orange Leaf. While supporters chow on tasty frozen yogurt, FCF Program Leaders, Summer Fellows, and volunteers will be on location spreading the importance of our three goals: supporting girls’ personal health and wellness, building girls’ skills and confidence as community change-agents, and fostering girls’ appreciation for the interdependence of life on earth.
We have also been hard at work recruiting future camp participants, by meeting with guidance counselors and social workers from local middle schools. We recently found out that at least 8 campers from last summer will be joking us for our second year, and we couldn’t be more excited! We are working on developing a mentor/mentee program in which campers from last year assist in guiding new campers through FCF’s Strong Camps. Continue reading