Posts tagged "Teen Girls"

Spotlight x Girls On Bikes!

Break a sweat, floss your style + express yourself as you pedal your way to ultimate movement! Girls On Bikes is a stylish initiative to help empower young urban girls by promoting health and encouraging participation in more recreational activities. Founder Kala makes it her mission to embrace girl power while encouraging teens to express their creativity, strength and physical + mental health.

Let’s get to know Girls On Bikes a little better…

Tell us about yourself – who you are, what you do, who inspires you and why, and what matters to you the most?

I am originally from Harlem; I grew up in Newark. I graduated from Rutgers at age 20. I majored in logistics (managing chain of supply) and fashion. There is a long history of fashion in my family. I did styling after finishing college. I loved everything about it. I decided to build up GOB and come back to styling full time later on.

I love me some Oprah Winfrey. I love watching her interviews. Not only for her business ethics and her work flow. More so because of how she knows what her purpose is in this world. She is all about self-love and being able to recognize what you are meant to do. Once you figure that out, why you are placed here, then you can really go out and flourish.

I love girls so much. Right now girl power is so in right now. I think it is great that we are able to recognize our self worth across all races, all people and women of color. Some girls may not be able to recognize their self worth and what they’re capable of and you just have to bring that to light by telling them you can do this and more. I also care about making my community a stronger place. That’s why it is important for me to do this with Girls on Bikes.

What is Girls on Bikes?

Girls on Bikes is a stylish initiative to help empower young urban girls by promoting health and encouraging participation in more recreational activities. The creation of GOB was inspired by the need for more recreation activities in my community. Our target is young girls and women of color. If you don’t know how to ride a bike, we teach you. I love the moment when someone learns how to ride a bike when they didn’t think that they could. That’s why we do what we do.

I used to ride my bicycle in my community in the west ward of NJ. I feel it is very therapeutic. I would get cute because it makes me feel good. I would go to the park and write in diary. One time this guy said keep on doing what you’re doing because you don’t see a lot of people out here doing that. It really dawned on me wow I really don’t see any other girls riding their bicycles in the community.

I started by highlighting girls actually on bicycles, girls with style. I would style them before the bike rides.  We would go on the bike ride and take photos. Then I would interview them about what it means to be a girl on a bike and how they feel after the ride. Eventually I started a page for Girls on Bikes. Through that I actually got connected to a guy who works in Newark public school system and he said why don’t we do after school program for Girls on Bikes.  First of all I never thought we would do an afterschool program for high school students. That was crazy; I had no idea I could do this. We designed a 6-week curriculum. It is one of the many curriculums we have designed covering topics such as bike history, self-love, affirmations, and natural hair styling tips for wearing a helmet.

What types of opportunities are available for teen girls through Girls on Bikes?

We participate in city-wide events, host monthly bike rides and workshops, and partner with other bike organizations. This summer we offered bike riding lessons every first and third Saturday. Seeing women of color cycling disturbs the norm. Bike riding is for everybody not just for privileged people. Every day you are a piece of art work; its like having art work riding down the block. We love this because we are doing things that people don’t think people in the hood do. It also disturbs the gender norm. From the point of being a person of color on a bicycle to then another level of being someone who can even afford a bicycle to then even being a woman on a bicycle. Why is society uncomfortable with girls biking? Don’t box girls in to only playing with dolls. It is important to expose them to other things. Girls are strong no matter what.

What advice would you give girls who want to follow their dreams and passions but are unsure which direction to go in?

Don’t overthink it. Start small. Do some research. Make the connections and start grinding. Things will come together when you are prepared. Take one step at a time. Everything happens at the right moment.


Fun Faves! Song? Food? Artist? Celeb Crush?

Song-No Limit by G Eazy. Food-Doubles (Trini Dish). Artist- Kanye. Crush-J. Cole


Check out more Girls On Bikes here:

IG: @GirlsOnBikess


Interview by Jasmine Utterback

STEM from Dance MOVE Event!

NYC! Come + support the MOVE event from STEM from Dance for their fundraiser for the 2017-2018 academic year. The focus is to expose young  to explore STEM ( STEM = Science , Technology, Engineering, Math) careers by fusing together computer programming and dance.


WHEN: May 11th

WHERE: SoHo – 69 Charlton St.

TO EAT/DRINK: Drinks + Food will be provided

INCLUDES:  a silent auction + general mingling + a good time

Tickets can be purchased here:

Tickets are $35

Girls from STEM from Dance


STEM from Dance

Meet The Evoluer House!

What comes to life with a mixture of  BOLD, POWERFUL + simply UNSTOPPABLE teen girls? The Evoluer House! This innovative and  dynamic nonprofit organization, delivers empowerment programs that help girls to envision a future devoid of disadvantages and filled with possibilities. Reaching  girls of color in Philadelphia ages 13 to 18, The Evoluer House  curriculums are designed to promote emotional, mental, and social well-being. It equips girls with the tools they need to become college-bound and career-ready.

Founder and Executive Director of The Evoluer House, Cheryl Ann Waldington, has been on a mission to advance all of girl kind! As a former national fashion and beauty journalist, she is an influential global change agent and leading consultant in the field of personal growth. Cheryl is an accomplished writer, television personality and sought-after motivational speaker, who has reached millions of people with her advice and perspective through media outlets as Vogue, Elle, Self, Life & Style, Lucky, C-Span and Her passions unfold in inspiring  youth and making a positive and lasting imprint on their lives!

Let’s get to know Cheryl Waldington + The Evolouer House a little better…

Evoluer House empowers young African American girls in the Philadelphia area through different curriculum and professional development, what made you launch this powerful organization?

I founded The Evoluer House 12 years ago because I believe every girl deserves the best opportunity to achieve her dreams, regardless of what zip code she is born in; and I was also aware that girls of color experience a unique set of social and emotional challenges and barriers to success in the U.S.. So I decided to take action to address those challenges and expand opportunities for marginalized girls for color. Our mission is to equip the most underserved and hardest-to-reach girls in Philadelphia with essential tools to become college-bound and career-ready, thus breaking the cycle of inter-generational poverty. Our organization has served over 1,200 teen girls of color, and I am very proud that 100% of Evoluer House graduates finish high school on time and go on to attend a four-year college or other forms of post-secondary education. Many of them have earned advance degrees.

Being a voice in the community motivates others to be great, what type of programs and events does Evoluer House host?

The Evoluer House offers two 8-week programs (the Youth Workforce Development and Evoluer Personal Development Programs), that encourage girls to think bigger, dream higher and be the best that they can be—women of character who are motivated to lead both personally and professionally.

We tend to pull characteristics from others in our lives or from people we admire, who inspires you and why?

My parents and brother are my inspiration. They instilled in me the belief that I don’t have to be like everybody else—to be myself—which has served as my foundation. This helped launch my career in fashion as a journalist and image consultant and instilled in me values that charted my life and defined success for me. They also underscored my responsibility to help others along the way and never let me forget that God is the rock upon which I stand.

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?

You can indeed be whatever you want to be. Tune out anyone who tells you otherwise. Sing your own song in your own key and groove to your own beat. Dream big and learn to live life FEARLESSLY.

Working with youth both parties learn from each other, what’s one trait you have learned from working with your girls?

I am thrilled to see girls throughout the country speaking up for their rights and taking an active role in making a difference in their community and beyond. They also understand the importance of empowering each other; and they’re inspired to change the world in big and small ways.

We’re all about empowerment at C.O.R.E Mag, what does EMPOWERMENT mean to you and your organization?

Girls deserve a world where they can be proud and unapologetic with the right to express her culture however she defines it, without judgment. To hear our graduates describe how Evoluer House helped them find the confidence to achieve their goals, this is what we know for sure: “An empowered girl will stay healthy. Save money. Build a business. Empower her community. Lift her country. Change the world.”

Fun Faves!
Holding “court” with my girls.
Weight lifting

Fave Food?
Anything healthy

Artist? Song?
Right now I’m loving: Andra Day: “I Rise Up” and Kelly Price: “It’s My Time.”

Find out more about The Evoluer House here:
The Evoluer House


Meet Sisterhood of the Traveling Heart!

“Beauty and confidence is defined by one’s perception of self, not that of others.”

-Kamelah Muhammad, Founder & President of Sisterhood of the Traveling Heart

The most powerful gift we can give is unlocking the potential in another individual. Kamelah Muhammad is doing just this as she’s paving the road for others while walking in her purpose! Seeing the negative impact that traditional and social media was having on the self-esteem of teen girls and women around the world, Sisterhood of the Traveling Heart, Inc. (SOTTH) was born. Founded in Brooklyn, New York on November 22, 2014, SOTTH’s founder, Kamelah Muhammad, wanted to create an atmosphere where teen girls and women came together in an effort to bond and hold each other accountable for uplifting one another. This is accomplished by motivating through life’s stories and promoting self-worth.  We create programs and experiences of empowerment.

Every teen girl and woman should be the definition of BEAUTY and the definition of CONFIDENT. We encourage each person to create and represent what beauty and confidence means to them. SOTTH, Inc. is about sharing a journey from woman to woman, state to state, country to country.

Let’s get to know Sisterhood of the Traveling Heart a little better…

Women in Need NYC PEACHY Experience

Sisterhood of the Traveling Heart, Inc. empowers teen girls by motivating through life’s stories and promoting self-worth, what made you launch this powerful organization?

I honestly wanted to make young girls and women feel good about themselves and to be comfortable in their skin. It’s pretty tough to think of yourself as beautiful especially being a woman of color when the media doesn’t promote your blackness as beautiful or important. Therefore, I saw a huge need. Our mission is to promote just that, beauty and confidence. I wanted to create an opportunity for women to come together, bond, laugh, share experiences and uplift one another. Our logo represents that. It is a
variation of different sizes and shades of peach to represent different women coming together and connecting. The color peach represents courage, elegance and immortality and these are the attributes that I wanted every young girl and woman to embody.

Being a voice in the community motivates others to be great, what type of events and courses does Sisterhood of the Traveling Heart host?

I always like to say that our events aren’t just events, we call them experiences! Our current experiences allow for bonding through authentic, fun and uplifting activities. For instance, during our Sisterhood PEACHY Experience, attendees are encouraged to unleash their inner confidence through dance during our choreography component, get wardrobe advice from our fashion consultants while shopping through free items, learn about the cosmetic industry while getting free makeovers and make vision boards that speaks to their future. We cater the activities to the wishes of the organization we work
with. We also host prom-themed experiences as well as back to school focused events. Our workshops allow for more in depth discussions around lifestyle improvement and empowerment. These workshops more so focus on etiquette, educational and professional development. We are happy with what we have accomplished thus far and are looking to grow and improve one step at a time.


We tend to pull characteristics from others in our lives or from people we admire, who inspires you and why?

My mother, Darlene Pierre-Muhammad! I honestly don’t know what I would do without her. As I’ve grown older, she really has become my best friend. It really doesn’t click when we are younger but everything she told me then makes so much sense now and I am happy our relationship has grown to where it is today. I talk to her pretty much every day. I’ll even call her at work and say “Hey mom! What are you doing” and she’ll respond “Work, girl!” I always laugh (lol) and then if she can spare a few minutes to talk,
she always does. She is the true definition of a strong woman and I always pray that I will be half the woman, half the wife, and half the mother that she is. She has shown me patience and compassion. Through her, I have learned what sacrifice and being a blessing to others really means. She is extremely supportive and for that I am forever thankful to 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?

I would let them know that God doesn’t make any mistakes. It’s important for all girls to know that. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I want girls to understand that beauty comes in all colors, shapes and sizes. I encourage girls to say words of affirmation on a daily basis to boost their confidence and to know that they don’t have to look like the girl on TV in which media is promoting as the standard of “beauty.” You are beautiful just the way you are. We must do better as a society to make sure our young girls understand their worth and value themselves.

Teen Living Programs Back to School Block PartyL

Working with youth both parties learn from each other, what’s one trait you have learned from working with girls?

Resilience. I must say that after interacting with the young ladies that I’ve had the pleasure of working with, I’ve learned that the trials I have had to overcome in life has been so minuscule compared to what these girls deal with on a day-to-day basis. One of the moments that really stuck with me is at an event we were hosting, every purse in our ‘store’ area had been claimed by other attendees. A young lady – about age 13 – who I had been interacting with throughout the day came to me and asked if we had
anymore long strapped purses such as the one I was wearing. It was tough having to tell her all the purses had been claimed but I then told her I had a special one for her. I proceed to empty my purse (which was a favorite) and put it around her. She gave me THE biggest smile and hug. My eyes watered. From there, instead of creating a vision board for herself, she created a thank you board for all the volunteers. I am getting choked up reflecting on this. It’s those moments which makes me know that I am truly walking in my purpose. It has been such a humbling journey since I’ve launched this organization. These girls are so strong-willed. It makes me happy knowing that even if for two hours, my volunteers and I can create a moment in time where they don’t have to have a care in the world. Our goal is to create an escape and true girlfriend-like bonding experiences. I love seeing them smile and having a good time!


We’re all about empowerment at C.O.R.E Mag, what does EMPOWERMENT mean to you + your organization?

To empower others means allowing your personal journey through life be another person’s inspiration and motivation. Empowering another means to allow some vulnerability and openness. It means having the courage to share experiences, good or bad, in hopes of inspiring the person who is on the receiving end to overcome and to trust their own process. To empower oneself means to take control of your life.


Fun Faves! Song? Food? Artist? Celeb Crush?

Song – Literally every song is my JAM so it’s hard to narrow down but I am such a fan of 90s R&B

Food – Fish Tacos, French Fries & Cookies

Artist – (Current Artist) Drake

Celeb Crush – Michael B. Jordan

Check out more here!

Sisterhood Of The Traveling Hearts





Lost In The Mix!

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From the parentals demanding 1,000 tasks from you to your friends wanting to be their counselor to your boyfriend missing you, it’s completely easy for you to get lost in everybody’s world! Relationships are apart of our daily routine. Yes, we all have those days where we want to crawl in bed to avoid everybody for weeks (private island, anyone?). But we have to face our lives making sure we’re managing healthy connections with people without being drained or lost in the mix of everybody’s lives! Ok, enough with the mini sermon + now to the quick tips that will change your life!

Space + Time for Yourself- I know your friends are like your sisters and your boyfriend is your future husband BUT sometimes you actually need a breather from everyone. A little space + quiet times allow you to unclutter others thoughts and really dig into how you feel and your outlook in life (without anybody’s opinions).

(Image - Tumblr)

(Image – Tumblr)

Everybody Is Not For Everything- Ok, have you ever been frustrated telling a friend something that they simply didn’t understand or didn’t care about? Before you write them off completely just realize you have different friends for different spaces in your life. You may have a homegirl who’s lively + fun who’s great for parties and another friend is a great listener, you see where we’re going with this? Give your friends a little space to see what their strong points are!

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Pockets of Happiness- Pause! What makes you happy? No, like really happy when no one is watching or looking.  Knowing what makes you happy will allow you to not feel drained when you deal with everybody in your life. Remember you can’t fill others glasses of happiness if yours is always empty!

Ask + You Shall Receive-  It’s true. It can be scary to say ‘No’ to the people who you care about  because it’s a fear they may get mad or leave your life. Ok, so quiet the drama queen in your mind for a sec. and just listen. People who really love you will understand and respect your options to have time for yourself or have some ‘me’ time when you ask for a little space.




On-Site Undercover!

On-site Undercover! Take a peek into C.O.R.E’s on-site program at Dr. Elma Flagg Elementary School during one of our empowering sessions with our awesome girls—>






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Meet Project Girl Mentoring!

What if  every young woman fulfills her potential? What if every young woman is set on the right path today? What if every young woman in Washington finishes high school, goes to a college or vocational school, gets a job and gives back to her community?  Well, this is exactly what Project Girl Mentoring is on the road of accomplishing with their empowering organization!

Founded by Olympia Edwards, Project Girl Mentoring Program envisions a community in which every young female is empowered to make confident decisions and be self-sufficient allowing them to develop into their full potential.

The non profit organization provides mentoring, educational and social activities to young women throughout Snohomish County and its surrounding area. The overall goal of the program is to support girls as they develop positive choices while learning new life skills and help them transition into womanhood. They focus on the Positive Youth Development (PYD) approach to help girls acquire the skills and knowledge to become healthy and productive women.

Let’s get to know more about Project Girl Mentoring…

Olympia Edwards, Founder of Project Girl Mentoring

Olympia Edwards, Founder of Project Girl Mentoring


Project Girl Mentoring Program was created to encourage young women to make positive life choices and to maximize their natural potential! How + why did you feel the need to launch this empowering program?

Project Girl Mentoring Program was developed because I felt the need to take an active role in shaping the lives of young women in my community. I was tired of seeing systematic stereotypes and disparities hold back women of color in my neighborhood. So I started the Project Girl Mentoring Program, as a prevention program to prepare them to overcome these life challenges. They need a place where they could learn how to be empowered to make confident decisions, envision themselves as leaders and recognize their power and recognize their self-worth.

Project Girl Mentoring has a variety of programs! Can you tell us about the Emerge, Inspire (HER) + STEAM Connect programs?

The Emerge is our core program where we provide mentorship to schools, community centers, faith based and other nonprofit programs. We focused our curriculum around modules of developing inner strength, leadership, healthy choices and life skills. Each curriculum module is designed to be 8-10 weeks. Sometimes, we address hard issues and break down major barriers, other times we have entertaining conversation about life in general.

Inspire (Her) is about taking mentoring to the next level and exposing young women of color to the community and actively involving them in events that affect their lives. Over the past year, we participated in lectures and empowering series with Dr. Joy DeGruy and Cornell West, attended conferences such as “How to Become a Successful Student Leader” and “Building Confidence within Understanding” and “Appreciation your Identity.”

Picture of Two Mentees/Program Coordinator with Dr. Joy DeGruy

Picture of Two Mentees/Program Coordinator with Dr. Joy DeGruy

S.T.E.A.M. Connect is designed to give young women of color meaningful access to science, technology, engineering, arts and math learning opportunities. We collaborate with several organization and schools throughout Washington that specialize in exposing girls to S.T.E.A.M. and integrated our mentoring program with their community projects. In addition, we get to meet professional women of color who are involved S.T.E.A.M. careers and is passionate about the work they get to do every day.

All of our programs are modeled behind national girl-serving organizations that have pointed to the need for gender and culturally relevant programs that allow young women to voice their experience, develop positive connections and gain the necessary skills to pursue their goals in education, career and relationships.

Working with youth both parties learn from each other, what’s one trait you have learned from working with girls?

One trait that I have learned from working with girls is that every girl, young woman, and woman is that we are continually develop ourselves as we understand our identity as women. Every day, like many women, I wake up wondering “Who am I as a woman of color” and “How can I make today different for me.” On the surface, we are all definitely different; we have different hair types, skin color and cultural traditions; however under everything that makes us different we are all truly seeking the same understanding “who are we.”


If you had to give one piece of advice to young ladies out there who are struggling with being comfortable in their own skin, what would it be?

The advice I would give is honestly, no one is comfortable 100% of the time with the way they look and its hard to love yourself if you don’t know how but you can learn and continue working on self-love. I would also give them this little acronym: (AEC)

A – Accepted every blemish, mark, and scar.

E – Embrace your distinctive beauty, love your complexion regardless who tells you otherwise.

C – Celebrate what makes you different from anyone else. Remember, that everyone is beautiful and true beauty lies within your own definition.

We tend to pull characteristics from others in our lives or from people we admire, who inspires you and why?

Currently right now, I am inspired by my niece who is such a brilliant young woman. She is very adventurous and creative. She reminds me that all young women are on the road of self-discovery and looking for support and guidance. My niece keeps me on my toes, always questioning life and looking for understanding. As I work with other young women, I ask myself “how would my niece react to the advice I am delivering to their young lives and how does it really shape their viewpoints.” This keeps me present to the experiences that young women are facing every single day.

We’re all about empowerment at C.O.R.E Mag, what does EMPOWERMENT mean to you + your organization?

To me, empowerment means to claim my voice as a leader in my community by using my talents, values and passion to influence the lives of young women of color. In Project Girl, empowerment means equipping young women of color with the necessary tools needed to succeed in life. We help them focus on the journey of self-fulfillment, learning and guidance.

Fun Faves! Song? Food? Artist? Celeb Crush?

My favorite song is Strength, Courage and Wisdom by India Arie, it talks about finding the strength inside and behind everything that you are and everything that you are not. My favorite food is French Fries with a little ketchup on the side. Since I like to paint, my favorite artist is Frida Kahlo, she is a Mexican painter who is known for her self-portraits. I am not as skilled but I do love the imagery she brings to her artwork. Here is an example of some of the artwork I do in my free time on 4*8 wood boards. (Picture of Abstract Art)

C.O.R.E. Abstract Art (1)

Check out more Project Girl Mentoring here…

Project Girl Mentoring




Don’t Even Know Dude!


Relationships, Latest | by — June 10, 2013


The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is a federal agency whose main goal is to protect the health and safety of the US population. One way that the CDC manages to protect public health is to monitor the population for trends or epidemics, and notify the public of anything that has been deemed unsafe and that seems to be spreading rapidly throughout the population. Well today, I’m the CDC and you’re the public, and I’m here to warn you of an epidemic.

Recently, I have noticed a growing epidemic of women making questionable decisions involving men that they barely know. Notice I said women. I’m talking about grown folks; people who are supposed to know better. Since it seems like they may have missed this piece of advice, I figured I’d try to hurry up and tell you so that you’ll be ahead of the curve. If you barely know a guy, TREAT HIM LIKE YOU BARELY KNOW HIM. I’m not saying be rude or distant. You should always be cordial and respectful. I’m just saying use your common sense and protect yourself from emotional and/or physical dangers.TV

When I was a teenager, I remember my relationships with guys developing fairly quickly. If I talked on the phone with a guy for a couple of weeks and kicked it with him a few times, that usually meant we were in the teenage version of a pretty serious relationship. If it lasted for more than a few months, folks thought you were going to get married. I remember and respect how the teenage game goes. But just because you may be moving at a somewhat accelerated pace doesn’t mean that you have to throw wisdom out of the window.

If you have literally just met a guy – I’m talking just learned his last name and don’t yet know his middle name – met a guy. He doesn’t have to be your boyfriend immediately. You don’t even know dude like that! I understand that you both like each other and want to lock it down, but take a little time to make sure he is really someone you want to be tied down to.

Also, it’s a very good possibility that dude…the one you just met…will be trying to get in your pants. He’s a guy. It’s kinda just what they do. Some are more patient and subtle than others, but it’s still part of the equation. That’s something that will never change, so you might as well prepare for it now. If he’s putting a little pressure on you to take things to the next level, tell him to calm down. If you’re considering it, stop. Not at this point. You don’t even know dude like that. Take your time. There’s no need to be in a rush.

If you have a boyfriend, but you’ve only been together a little while (maybe a few months or less), and he’s been spending a majority of that time trying to convince you to have sex, take your time. You don’t even know dude like that! Sex is serious, and a lot of responsibility comes with it (that’s another blog for another day), so it’s not something that you should jump into lightly.

One last thing: If you’ve met someone on the internet and are considering meeting them face to face, please do not go to their house or some other private place. Don’t invite them to your house, either. You do not know them like that. You could be putting yourself in a dangerous situation. If anything, meet them at a crowded public place and make sure you tell someone what’s going on.

I’m sure that there are a lot of people in your life who care for you and try protect you, but the ultimate responsibility of your safety and well-being lies with you. Learn from the mistakes of others, and try not to make those same mistakes yourself. Make wise decisions that will help you avoid some of the emotional and physical pain that so many others experience. There are a lot of factors that are out of your control, but one that is in your control is the amount of time you spend getting to know someone before giving them access to every part of you. Take the time to learn enough about them to make sure they’re deserving of everything you have to offer.