I remember the ambivalent feeling I had in December when I was a SWSG mentor. I was sad that I would be leaving the girls for nearly two months during winter vacation, but excited for the end of finals and going to see my family. Now that I’m a Site Facilitator, there is no more ambivalence.  I’m sad that Strong Women, Strong Girls is gone from our site for the next few weeks. With all the girls still in after school, what’s a Site Facilitator to do?
When I ran into one of the SWSG staff members at Health Resources in Action’s BEST Initiative Youth Worker Certificate training, which focuses on youth voice in programming and youth participation, she gave me a great idea. Why don’t we work with the girls on writing and have them write their own blog entries?  For the girls, it’s a great way to build real-world skills and to get their voices heard.  For me, it’s a way to fill the gap in December and January when the mentors aren’t here.
I brought this idea to the girls at my site, and they were very excited. Many girls wrote first drafts of their blog entries, and we helped them edit and re-write until they had a finished product.  What you will read is all their own words and thoughts. Though we gave them a lot of freedom on topic choice, they mainly chose to write about what they like about SWSG and what they have learned. I hope that you enjoy!