Launched in 2000 as a student group at Harvard University by then-freshman, Lindsay Hyde, SWSG engaged 6 women as mentors to 30 girls. Since that time, requests from parents, schools, and community members have driven the program’s growth. In 2004, Strong Women, Strong Girls incorporated as a non-profit agency in Boston and now serves over 800+ girls annually in over 17 neighborhoods in and around Greater Boston.
Meet the demand for women’s leadership opportunities.
Engage Boston’s robust college student population in service while exposing them to the neighborhoods and assets of Boston.
Provide much needed gender-specific programming for eligible elementary age girls.
240 college mentors from six college chapters are empowering 800+ girls at 65 program sites.
Tara Abrahams, Strategy Consultant, International Girls & Women Advocate
Susan Brady, EVP, Global Program Strategy & Development at Linkage
Carole Carlson, Managing Director, Carlson Partners, and Senior Lecturer, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University
Jahnavi Curlin, Student Board Member, Harvard University
Jessica Lee, Investor Relations Officer, Root Capital
Kate Bennett, Senior Manager, AC Program
Kay Lynch, Vice President, Human Resources, MaidPro
Kyle MacDonald, Attorney, Verrill Dana, LLP
Sheila Moore, Associate Program Manager, Diversity & Inclusion, Liberty Mutual Insurance
Wilna Paulemon, Student Board Member, Tufts University
Dr. Valerie Roberson, President, Roxbury Community College
Kait Rogers, Chief Financial & Admin Officer, Citizen Schools
Elaine Stokes, Vice President, Portfolio Manager, Loomis, Sayles & Company, L. P.
Dr. Janelle (Jan) Shubert, Adjunct Professor of Management & Senior Fellow in Social Innovation, Babson College
Kathryn Ward, PMP, Senior Project Manager, Natixis Global Asset Management
The Strong Women, Strong Girls team ensures that girls and women in Boston develop skills, relationships, and role models to ensure future success.
Siiri Morley is a passionate women and girls rights activist, social entrepreneur, and changemaker. She is the Founder and former Executive Director of Prosperity Catalyst, a nonprofit organization focused on investing in women in distressed parts of the world to become successful leaders and entrepreneurs. Siiri has worked on poverty reduction and sustainable economic development projects focused on women in Afghanistan, Croatia, Ecuador and Kenya. She began her career with the Peace Corps in Lesotho where she worked with a women-led weaving business. She received her MBA from the Heller School of Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University in 2009. In 2012, Siiri was recognized as 1 of 60 notable women in Fast Company’s “League of Extraordinary Women” and was profiled as an “Agent of Change” by PBS Newshour in 2013. Siiri lives in Boston, MA with her husband and dog. In the spare hours outside of her work, she loves to travel, hike, snowshoe, meditate, practice yoga, & host potlucks with a home full of friends.Siiri at smorley(at)swsg.org
Shaunda Lewis is the Associate Director for Strong Women, Strong Girls Boston, where she works closely with the Executive Director in overseeing the SWSG Boston program, team, and office. Before joining SWSG, Shaunda was the Program Manager for Massachusetts at the National Center on Time and Learning where she led the development and implementation of professional learning for expanded learning time (ELT) schools statewide. Prior to her role as Program Manager, Shaunda held the roles of both Coordinator and Program Associate for the organization; helping to launch and manage national and statewide programs delivering deep technical assistance to schools and districts planning for and implementing a longer and improved schedule and day.
Shaunda’s professional experience spans the non-profit, public, and private sectors; including work on the education policy team at a lobbying and consulting firm in Washington, D.C., the Corporate Relations Department at Heineken USA, and in the office of former Massachusetts United States Senator John F. Kerry. She is a passionate social reformer dedicated to developing systems and practices that lead to more inclusive communities.
Shaunda received a B.A. in History, with minors in Sociology and Africana Studies, from The George Washington University.
Sarah Kacevich joined Strong Women, Strong Girls in June 2014, starting as a Program Associate and the FAO Schwarz Family Foundation Fellow for 2014-2016, and continuing on as a Program Manager. She is a 2013 graduate of Trinity College (Hartford, Connecticut), where she earned a B.A. in Human Rights Studies with a minor in Hispanic Studies. Prior to joining SWSG, Sarah worked at the Omega Women’s Leadership Center at Omega Institute, a holistic education center in Rhinebeck, NY, and volunteered in rural Chile. At SWSG, Sarah works with college/university, elementary school, and community center partners; coordinates the Junior Mentor Program (JUMP); manages partnerships with peer organizations; develops training for volunteers; and helps to coordinate SWSG’s community-based participatory research project.Sarah at skacevich(at)swsg.org
Fakisha has rejoined Strong Women, Strong Girls as a Highland Street AmeriCorps Ambassador of Mentoring as she originally joined us as a college mentor with UMass’ Boston’s SWSG Chapter. In addition to volunteering for Strong Women, Strong Girls in her undergraduate career, Fakisha served as a Student Ambassador for her university through various offices including the Honors College and Undergraduate Admissions. She found expressed her love for literature and writing during these years, studying abroad at Oxford University. Having recently graduated from UMass Boston with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a minor in Political Science, she is continuing her education at the same university as a candidate of a Master of Public Administration degree. She hopes to continue her career and education to impact systematic oppression in the greater metropolitan areas of our country. She plans to do this by combining her love for children, early education and literature by working on policies and legislative materials that directly impact the children who are most affected by our country’s income disparity issues. In her free time Fakisha enjoys books, friends and Netflix.
Renata became a part of the SWSG community in the Fall of 2011, when she became a Mentor at the Simmons College Chapter. While at Simmons, she spent 4 years with SWSG in various roles including 2 different positions on E-Board and an internship at the Boston office, and is now joining as a Program Assistant. Renata studied Public Health at Simmons, and developed an interest in Global Health and Migration, which took her to study global health systems in countries like Switzerland and Morocco. Renata is deeply dedicated to the idea of community based empowerment, and most recently, worked to connect people with disabilities to community health resources which empower individuals to remain independent. Renata plans to combine her experience with community based organizations with her background in public health to improve access to healthcare for marginalized populations through community building.
Sarah has just joined the Strong Women, Strong Girls Boston team in July 2016, and is serving as the Development Assistant through December 2016. Sarah is passionate about new experiences, innovative approaches to solving local and global issues, and activism. Originally from Austin, Texas, she is now in her fifth year of studies in Business and Social Entrepreneurship at Northeastern University and is on Co-op for Summer 2 and Fall semester. In Boston, Sarah has worked on the Talent team at New Profit Inc, a venture philanthropy fund, volunteered with Jumpstart and Peer Health Exchange and currently is on the executive board for the Northeastern Progressive Student Alliance. She has also spent time in India doing consulting work with social entrepreneurs and traveled to the Mendoza Province of Argentina to live and work on an organic farm. Sarah loves to travel and her dream is backpack from Mexico all the way to the tip of South America. In her free time Sarah likes to cook, eat, go salsa dancing, and plan her next trip.
Ana joined the Strong Women, Strong Girls Boston team as Development Assistant in January of 2017. In her role, Ana focuses on tracking cash flow, maintaining databases with up to date donor information, ensuring that all donations are properly acknowledged, liaising with current corporate sponsors, and supporting development functions. Originally from Los Angeles, Ana is a Junior at Northeastern University. She is majoring in Human Services with a specialty in Child and Family Services, and minoring in History. She has previously worked on the development team at uAspire, a Boston-based nonprofit focused on college affordability. Ana has also worked with Jumpstart and the Autism Program at Boston Medical Center. She is passionate about civil rights, educational access, social welfare policy, and prevention science. After college, Ana hopes to go to law school and work towards ending the achievement gap.
“This is our time to shine!”
“My vision for the world is supporting other people. In SWSG, I knew I had a group of people I could count on.”
“…it was empowering for me as a mentor to have a leadership role as someone for the girls to look up to. My role as site leader really pushed me to show strong leadership skills.”
“I’ve met some really inspiring girls of all ages who have helped me become a proud woman, proud of my strength rather than inclined to cover up that strength in an effort to feel more like a girl.”
“I’ve had the opportunity to meet probably over 100 extremely strong and confident women and girls over the past four years. It has been an amazing opportunity and I am so happy I got involved with the program.”
“My Professional Mentor helped me set attainable goals throughout this year to keep me on the right track with my job search. She was incredibly patient in helping me figure out my path, and checked in with me regularly between our meetings to see how I was doing with my goals”
“While I was interning with SWSG and mentoring, my Professional Mentor helped me balance my roles in each of those settings. Kathryn is incredible supportive and I felt empowered after our meetings. I look forward to continuing our relationship after I graduate.”