Did you know that the Center for American Progress reports that women earn almost 60% of undergraduate degrees and 60% of all master’s degrees, and yet women make up only 14.6% of executive officers, 8.1% of top earners, and 4.6% of Fortune 500 CEOs?
Or that the United States currently ranks 60th in women’s political empowerment on the Gender Gap Index, and the world average for women in national parliaments is 21% – slightly above the 18% in the U.S. House of Representatives?
That although women control 80 percent of consumer spending in the United States, they make up only 3% of creative directors in advertising?
Or that an “Investigation of Female Characters in Popular Films Across 11 Countries” by the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media shockingly found that, “female teens and adults were equally likely to be shown in sexy attire, partially or fully naked, and referred to as beautiful. That is, there is virtually little or no difference in the sexualization of female characters between the ages of 13 and 39 years.”
Or finally, that the Dove Self-Esteem Fund found that 7 in 10 girls believe they are not good enough or do not measure up in some way, including their looks, performance in school, and relationships with family and friends? And that according to research in Body Wars, 51% of 9-10 year old girls feel better about themselves when dieting. The #1 wish of girls 11-17 years old is to lose weight.
That is why we are excited to announce the launch of Blossom & Flourish as
a registered nonprofit organization based out of Pittsburgh, PA. At Blossom & Flourish, we specialize in providing leadership training and confidence building programs for middle school & high school girls.
Our mission is to enable girls to see themselves as leaders by giving them the skills and confidence they need to succeed in their academic, extracurricular, and personal lives. And our vision is for a generation of young, empowered, female leaders who will positively influence others and make a difference in their world.
Founded about five and a half years ago by Valerie Faust, Blossom & Flourish has served over 350+ students in Western PA. Valerie, now the Executive Director, is excited for the opportunities this latest development will bring for Blossom & Flourish.
“Growing up, I moved multiple times in middle school and high school, so I know first-hand how hard it can be at that age – especially when you are the awkward new girl, you have no friends, and sometimes you eat your lunch in the bathroom so others don’t see you eating alone or you get a note telling you to go back where you came from because no one likes you – your confidence suffers.
On the bright side, however, those experiences gave me a heart for empowering middle school and high school girls, and after working at a professional leadership consulting company for four years and observing the lack of women in leadership positions first hand, I decided to launch Blossom & Flourish in 2011. Now, with our status as a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit, I’m confident that we will be able to make our services available to more young women of diverse backgrounds than ever before.”
So please, join us by following us on Facebook & Instagram, support us on Amazon Smile, and consider investing in a young girl's life to help her discover the leader she is capable of being. Join us as we cultivate a generation of young, empowered, female leaders who will positively influence others and make a difference in their world.