|I co-founded nonprofit Hardy Girls Healthy Women in 1990 with Karen Heck and Lynn Cole, two amazing community activists. Working alongside girls, we’ve discovered that when you trust girls, when you provide opportunities for them to connect with one another and when they have access to muses that inspire their best work, they thrive.
Hardy Girls is committed to changing the culture in which girls grow. We partner with girls connect them with the people and resources that help them transform their surroundings into safe havens; and we empower girls with knowledge, critical thinking skills, and a platform for activism.
As an organization, we have spent the last 15 years finding out what happens when you listen to girls and take them seriously, when you work side by side with them to challenge the cultural narrative that pits girls against one another, promotes unrealistic body and beauty ideals, and sexualizes girls from a very young age, blurring the lines between childhood, adolescence and adulthood.
Hardy Girls’ programs and resources are used to support girls’ healthy development in 39 states, 5 countries, and by more than 30,000 people via our mailing lists and networks. Additionally, with our new Training Institute, we are educating people from around the country in our approach to working with girls.
|In 2010, Hardy Girls launched Powered by Girl (PBG) a girl-driven online media literacy and activism campaign. As we hoped, in time girls themselves took the campaign over. Today PBG is entirely run by girls for girls, with some financial support from Colby’s Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program. I’m still available as guide and muse to London-based editor, Yas Snarf, but the girls run the show.|
PBG offers new knowledge, creative tools, and opportunities to talk back to media and demand more realistic and positive versions of girlhood.
|In 2010, I co-founded SPARK Movement with Deborah Tolman, a growing coalition of girls, partners, and thought leaders united in their determination to challenge the sexualization of girls and demand girls’ rights to healthy sexuality. I helped to develop the SPARKTeam of youth bloggers and created a series of online media literacy and activism projects inspired by and co-branded with our partner organizations.|