Title

The Great Girls Club: From a Pilot Project to a Proven Program

Location

Sloane

Strand #1

Social & Emotional Skills

Relevance

The proposal relates to the Social & Emotional Skills Strand because the GREAT GIRLS program, through frequent interactive lessons, fosters social and emotional skills in girls, so that they will develop a positive sense of self and a respect towards others which should help them make wise decisions, develop leadership skills, and set goals for their future. As a result, participants in the GREAT GIRLS program should have improved grades, increased community service, and a better chance to graduate from high school. Conference attendees will gain an understanding of what the GREAT GIRLS model is.

Brief Program Description

Want to help girls to become GREAT? The GREAT GIRLS program is an innovative, proven model that has been successfully implemented in several school districts and nonprofit organizations. Attendees will gain insight about the GREAT GIRLS model including some “outside of the box” strategies for program success. Anyone who works with tween and teen girls should attend.

Summary

This proposal is for The GREAT GIRLS model, a model that is currently used in schools and nonprofit organizations, with rave reviews. However, the model can also be used in other agencies that serve youth, such as, the Department of Juvenile Justice, 4-H, Girls Scouts, churches, etc., as a stand-alone component or as an addition to current programs. The primary goal of the GREAT GIRLS model is to help girls, ages 10 – 18, to have a positive, promising, and productive life by fostering social and emotional skills in girls and also by giving them a positive self-concept. The model currently consists of three main areas: 1) Training for facilitators and orientation for girls; 2) Facilitating the discussions of the eight sessions of the book which covers the following topics: Potential, Self-Esteem, Values, Goal-Setting, Decision Making, Pressures, Leadership, and Media Awareness; 3) Implementing hands-on related activities for girls to participate in that reinforce the lessons; and 4) planning a closing celebration for the girls and their parents. During the presentation to the course attendees, the presenters goals are to explain the GREAT GIRLS model by first, demonstrating and elaborating on the four areas above; next, encouraging participants to think “outside the book” when creating or using a model by providing practical examples; and last, encouraging participants to use their “ESP” (Education/Experience, Skills, and Passion) to start a program or to become involved in an existing one. Attendees will participate in selected activities, such as analyzing a poem, dissecting a song and writing their affirmation to reinforce specific topics. In addition, they will hear lessons learned from real program participants to see the impact that the program is having. Attendees will take away information and ideas to begin a new girls program or to enhance a current one, along with presentation handouts.

Evidence

In 2013, the GREAT GIRLS program began as a 9 week pilot with 25 girls (ages 13-16) at the Boy & Girls Club of Bluffton under their “Smart Girls” program. Based upon in-class observations, and written and video testimonials from the participants and staff, the program was very successful in increasing the participant’s self-esteem and in helping them to make better choices. In the fall of the same year, the GREAT GIRLS program piloted at Michael C Riley Elementary School and Ridgeland Elementary School with 52 and 60 girls respectively (their entire 5th grade classes). Testimonials from participants, teachers, principals, social workers, guidance counselors, as well as thank-you cards from parents attest to the success of the program. Specifically, participants began to resolve conflict among themselves, exhibited leadership skills (joining school organizations), displayed greater confidence, and demonstrated better behaviors and attitudes. Those schools implemented the program again in 2014. In addition, two new elementary schools have begun the GREAT GIRLS program with high expectations. According to aboutourkids.org, “social-emotional learning techniques can significantly improve a child’s chances of being successful in school and beyond.” In addition, “social competencies are assets that help children navigate the complex social world, including qualities such as empathy, friendship skills, and comfort with other cultures” (www.girlsleadershipinstitute.org). The GREAT GIRLS model addresses the social and emotional skills that are crucial to helping a girl becoming her best self.

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Rhonda G. Mincey received her M. Ed. from Armstrong State University. She co-developed a mentoring proposal that was selected as a model for Armstrong’s Adult Education department. For nearly a decade, Mrs. Mincey has been an advocate for the success, development, and well-being of young girls that come from various walks of life and has implemented programs in local communities, schools, and alternative centers that have challenged the mindset of thousands of girls. Mrs. Mincey is author of the book, A Girl’s Guide to Becoming Great and Executive Director of The Great Girls, Inc. In addition,
Mrs. Mincey has been featured in numerous publications and has received several awards for community service, including the Turner Broadcasting Station’s prestigious Pathfinders Award. She is a member of the American Association of University Women, the Junior League of Savannah, and the National Technical Honor Society.

Presentation Year

2015

Start Date

3-2-2015 1:15 PM

End Date

3-2-2015 2:30 PM

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Mar 2nd, 1:15 PM Mar 2nd, 2:30 PM

The Great Girls Club: From a Pilot Project to a Proven Program

Sloane

Want to help girls to become GREAT? The GREAT GIRLS program is an innovative, proven model that has been successfully implemented in several school districts and nonprofit organizations. Attendees will gain insight about the GREAT GIRLS model including some “outside of the box” strategies for program success. Anyone who works with tween and teen girls should attend.