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G.O.O.D. for Girls’ Annual Gala, November 8
November 8, 2019 @ 7:00 pm - 11:30 pm
One of the highlights of the Annual Fundraiser Gala for G.O.O.D. for Girls (GfG), the community non-profit that mentors young girls throughout Westchester to become confident young women, will be its first-ever comprehensive leadership development program that was launched two months ago.
In addition, a group of girls who have successfully met special criteria including completing community service projects will be honored during a ceremony— “Giving Pearls of Wisdom”— the theme of the event that will be held at 7 PM, November 8, at the VIP Club, New Rochelle.
Lori Stephens, founder and President of GfG, will share with distinguished guests and supporters the following highlights of the leadership development conference that was held August 21-23 at Pace University:
- The keynote speaker was Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins— the first African-American and first woman to serve as Majority Leader of the New York State Senate.
- Senator Stewart-Cousins joined other successful role models including business owners and professions who inspired a group of 25 girls to follow their passions. The presenters were Dr. Deborah Matthews, clinical psychologist; Alexa Pozniak, coordinating producer at CNBC; Dara Pinkston-Scott, Sales Director at Mary Kaye Cosmetics; Gloria Cunningham, owner of The Ambitious Soul; Shannon Alomar, Ms. Black New York and Yvette V. Miller, owner of Untethered, LLC.
- Drawing from their personal and professional experiences, the presenters examined the characteristics and qualities of what it takes to be effective leaders, including strategies for building self-confidence, overcoming fear of public speaking and developing a positive mindset.
- The girls were inspired to hear the presenters talk about the obstacles and challenges they faced and how they broke their class ceilings, perhaps identifying with similar issues in their lives.
- Taking their cue in part from one of Senator Stewart-Cousins’ remarks — “Find out what it is that you like to do – your passion – then lead with compassion”, the girls were tasked to identify and take ownership of a project that would foster awareness, address a need, initiate a change or have some other impact.
- The projects ranged from a Campaign to Combat Childbirth Deaths; Serenity’s Smiles to bring joy back to the school place; Spreading the Word at a Juvenile Detention Center; to a Beaded Jewelry Business where a percentage of the proceeds will go to purchase personal hygiene products for girls in a shelter.
- The girls left the conference with a clear set of goals to complete their projects by next March. The participant whose project is judged to be exceptional in its execution will be rewarded with a $300 cash prize.
- The leadership development initiative builds on GfG’s tradition of providing educational events like STEAM workshops and career fairs that are designed to open the girls’ eyes to future possibilities.
- Since it was established in 2009, GfG has helped about 80 ‘tween and teen girls in communities throughout Westchester to become confident young women.
- The mentoring program has made a positive and indelible impact on mentees who are on the paths to become a psychiatrist, attorney, pediatrician, digital artist, pediatrician, psychologist, among others.
At the “Giving Pearls of Wisdom” ceremony, the honorees will be teenage girls 15 years of age and older who have been in GfG’s mentoring program for at least two years. The criteria for eligibility for this top honor is completing a community service project as well as writing an essay in response to one of four specific questions, interviewing a woman who has inspired them and participating in a boot camp weekend, i.e., fitness, stamina, teamwork, creativity.
The girls will be seated next to their mentors who will speak “words of wisdom” in their ears and then “pearl” them with a strand of pearls. The girls, in turn, will present these women with a special gift.
To learn more about G.O.O.D. for Girls, Inc., order tickets for the November 8th Gala, or make a donation, visit www.goodforgirlsinc.org.
About G.O.O.D. for Girls, Inc.
GfG began in 2009 when Lori Stephens, a congregant of White plains-based Union Baptist Church, acted on a seed of an idea suggested by its pastor, Rev. Dr. Verlin D. Williams, to develop a mentoring program for the community.
Inspired by the idea, Ms. Stephens established G.O.O.D. for Girls, Inc. G.O.O.D. is an acronym for God’s Outstanding Optimistic Destiny for Girls which aptly reflects the faith and vision of the organization. From the start, Ms. Stephens has served as GfG’s president.
The mission of GfG is to mentor and develop essential assets through support, empowerment, boundaries/expectations, constructive use of time, commitment to learning, positive identity, positive values and social competencies which every girl needs to reach her destiny of success. The one-on-one and group mentoring approach begins by telling a young girl that she is strong, intelligent, beautiful, creative and important; and that she can make a difference.