Thought Leader Hosts Fourth Annual Girls’ Leadership Summit
Nov 03, 2016
Helping Middle School Girls Thrive Through Leadership and Service
(Stamford, CT) Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’ Fund for Women & Girls promotes philanthropy as a means to create change in Fairfield County. And create exciting change is exactly what transpired for 113 middle school girls from Fairfield County and beyond, who participated today at the fourth annual Leadership Summit. Twenty-two schools participated including twenty from Fairfield County.
The Girls Leadership Summit’s mission was to develop leadership skills in middle school children. Throughout the Summit, the girls learned how to become leaders in all areas of their lives. The Summit was created to address the preconceived, inaccurate notions about leadership that many girls have. Some believe that one’s socio-economic class; clothing; school and such, preclude them from leading.
The Summit was developed to foster the notion that every girl has the potential to lead – whether it be at home, school, faith-based organization and/or in the community. Throughout the day, the girls were encouraged to look at leadership differently. Importantly, the girls were challenged by “being comfortable with being uncomfortable” while still achieving their goals.
“Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’s Fund for Women & Girls is committed and dedicated to creating better lives socially and economically by addressing the needs of women and girls throughout Fairfield County,” stated Juanita T. James, CEO & President, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. She continued, “By encouraging our youth to be leaders and creating this opportunity for them to participate in the Leadership Summit and introduce them to the importance of service is as rewarding as it is meaningful. Helping open these girls’ eyes to possibilities creates great new beginnings. Being encouraged to dream big is exciting and important.”
Girls from public and private middle schools, located in and around Fairfield County, participated in presentations, workshops and team-building activities – all specially designed for this age group. Professionals, in collaboration with local high school girls, led leadership development sessions. The student presenters and their coaches were from St. Lukes School in New Canaan, CT and Westbrook High School in Westbrook, CT. Girls at the Summit reside and/or attend school in the following cities and towns in Fairfield County and beyond: Bridgeport; Bristol; Darien; Norwalk; Stamford; Greenwich; New Canaan; Newtown; Pound Ridge; Riverside and Saratoga Springs. The presenters reside in Norwalk; Darien; Wilton and Westbrook.
Lexi Kelley, founder of Kids Helping Kids, delivered a keynote speech focused on involvement, leadership and service. Kids Helping Kids is a nonprofit based in Stamford, CT and winner of the World Affairs Forum’s Future Global Leader Award. At the end of the Summit, the girls received copies of Stand Up! 75 Young Activists Who Rock the World, for which Lexi Kelley was a contributing author.
To challenge themselves, connect with each other and simply have fun – the girls also participated in gymnastics, trampoline activities and rock climbing at Chelsea Piers in Stamford, CT. Sponsors of this year’s program include NBC Sports Group; Eileen Fisher; Bic; Cohen and Wolf P.C., Attorneys at Law and St Luke’s School Center for Leadership. Summit partners include Kids Helping Kids; Athena Personal Safety Training and Westbrook High School.
“We congratulate Fairfield County’s Community Foundation: The Fund for Women & Girls on their 4th Annual Girls Leadership Summit and for their dedication to educating and enriching the lives of women and girls in Fairfield County. We are proud to support the Leadership Summit in their mission to help provide women and girls with the proper tools for success and to invest in a brighter future for our community,” said Greg Hughes, Senior Vice President, Communications, NBC Sports Group.
The Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’s Fund for Women & Girls is a special interest fund of the Community Foundation and the largest women’s fund in New England. Since 1998, The Fund has invested nearly $5 million in grants to programs serving females ages 5 to 90. The mission is to engage philanthropists and invest in sustainable solutions that lead to economically secure and healthy women and girls throughout Fairfield County.
About Fairfield County’s Community Foundation
Fairfield County’s Community Foundation promotes philanthropy as a means to create change in
Fairfield County, focusing on innovative and collaborative solutions to critical issues impacting the community. Individuals, families, corporations and organizations can establish charitable funds or contribute to existing funds. The Community Foundation is in compliance with the Council on Foundations’ national standards and has awarded over $208 million in grants to nonprofits in Fairfield County and beyond. As a trusted nonprofit partner and thought leader, Fairfield County’s Community Foundation brings together community organizers, business experts and philanthropists to solve our region’s challenges. Their goal is to create a vital and inclusive community, where every individual has the opportunity to thrive.
About Fairfield County’s Community Foundation’s Fund for Women & Girls
The Fund for Women & Girls, a special interest fund of the Community Foundation, is the largest women’s fund in New England. The mission is to engage philanthropists and invest in sustainable solutions that lead to economically secure and healthy women and girls throughout Fairfield County. Since 1998 The Fund has invested nearly $5 million in grants to programs serving females ages 5 to 90. The Fund is a member of the global Women’s Funding Network and the White House endorsed Prosperity Together.
For more information, please visit:
• Fairfield County’s Community Foundation: fccfoundation.org
• The Fund for Women & Girls: fccfoundation.org/fwg
• Facebook: FCCFoundation
• Twitter: FCCFoundation
• Blog: fccfoundation.org/blog/