Every girl should live bold, love strong and laugh loud! Girls; Live, Love, Laugh, Inc. is a nonprofit organization focusing on 6-13 year old girls living with limited resources in the inner city of Newark, New Jersey and the surrounding areas. Their vision is to empower girls by building positive self-esteem, proper etiquette, self respect, and health/fitness. They aim to make a difference by removing obstacles that stand in their way, so that they can become respectable, successful, productive, and happy young ladies. This influential organization offers a variety of programs that focuses on many pressing issues that are relevant in today’s society.
Let’s get to know Girls; Live.Love.Laugh, Inc. a little better…
Girls; Live. Love. Laugh, Inc. empowers girls by building positive self-esteem, proper etiquette, self-respect, and health/fitness! What made you launch this empowering organization?
I didn’t launch this empowering organization, God had this vision and is just using me to do his work. I was the chosen one. I now know that every test, every trail and tribulation that I have been through he was preparing me for this assignment. When God blesses you with a gift or a calling, it is up to us to answer him and use our gifts. Girls; Live. Love. Laugh. Inc. in here because of Him.
How does Girls; Live. Love.Laugh, Inc. encourages positive family influence in young ladies lives?
Family is extremely important to the very foundation of Girls; Live. Love. Laugh, Inc. Losing our parents at an young age, all of my sibling and I had was each other. I do not know what would have become of us if my parents did not instill the value of family before their passing. We teach our girls that in our organization we are family. We may not always agree or get along, but as with blood relatives, we work through it together. We also encourage open communication between mentors and the parents. It’s about building a support system that let’s our girls know that they are not alone and there are people who they can turn too no matter what. At GLLLs, there is nothing more important than family, but God.
If you had to give one piece of advice to teen girls who are struggling with being comfortable in their own skin, what would it be?
God made no mistakes when he made you. You are beautiful just the way you are. Your uniqueness separates you from everyone else in the world; embrace it, love it and own it. There will never be another You; so live life impressing yourself, and being the best you can possible be. YOU ROCK!
We tend to pull characteristics from others in our lives or from people we admire, who inspires you and why?
My mom is my greatest inspiration. Growing up in the projects with 7 siblings I never knew that we were what society deemed as “poor”. My mom worked and went to school. She was not just a provider for her children, but all the children in the neighborhood. Although it wasn’t much, she shared everything she had with everyone. She raised her children on the scripture Mark 12:31 “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself”. I inherited my spirit of community giving and loving from my mom.
Working with youth both parties learn from each other, what’s one trait you have learned from working with girls?
One of the most transforming things I have learned from our girls is to DREAM BIG and FEAR NOTHING! Every year we ask the girls to fill-out profile cards where they are allowed to share anything, specifically, their dreams and goals. Over the years I’ve noticed that some of the girl’s dreams were the same dreams I had at their age. Unlike our girls, I was fearful and lacked the self-esteem to pursue my dreams. Because of their fearless spirit I was inspired to pursue my college degree and start my own business. I am now entering my final semester at Essex County College, where I will be receiving my degree in Social Work. I am also the proud owner of The Youthpreneur, LLC. a dedicated to providing events and entertainment specific to youth. As they set out to make me proud, I want to make them as equally proud.
We’re all about empowerment at C.O.R.E Mag, what does EMPOWERMENT mean to you + your organization?
To me, Empowerment means finding your own voice, and then helping others to find theirs. Empowerment also means investing in your community by giving back through volunteer work and community service. Girls;Live, Love, Laugh Inc. believe that Empowerment is helping your sisters; wanting for them, the same things you would want for yourself. We have an obligation to one another as sisters, and that is to pull up the next sister by providing them with the tools and resources that were afforded to us.
Fun Faves! Song? Food? Artist? Celeb Crush?
Eating Pizza, Traveling, Singing and Reading are my fun faves. My favorite song is Fantasia’s “Sometimes you have to lose to win again”. My favorite artist includes Fantasia and Pastor Shirley Caesar. My favorite celebrity crush I would have to say my husband Andre. He’s my celebrity and I have the biggest crush on him.
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