Circles for Girls is an 8-week educational exploratory group for girls. In Circles for Girls a group of 5-10 girls gather with two college-aged facilitator and are able to use authentic voices to comfortably absorb essential information relating to their social, emotional, and physical well-being.
Circles for Girls is designed to increase positive connections, personal and collective strengths, and competencies in girls. It aims to counteract social and interpersonal forces that impede girls’ growth and development by promoting an emotionally safe setting and structure within which girls can develop caring relationships and express themselves while they learn and grow.
Circles for Girls are led by facilitators who guide girls through a format that includes each girl taking turns talking and respectfully listening to others about their concerns and interests. The girls express themselves further through creative or focused activities such as role playing, drama, journaling, poetry, dance, drawing, collage, and so on. Gender-specific themes and topics are introduced which relate to the girls’ lives, such as being a girl, trusting ourselves, friendships, communication, managing conflict effectively, body image, goals, sexuality, drugs, alcohol, tobacco, competition, family relationships, and decision-making.
When girls voice their ideas and opinions in a safe environment, it strengthens their confidence and self-esteem and encourages them to express themselves more fully and critically think through their behavior and choices. By examining cultural expectations in a safe and supportive setting, girls gain greater awareness of their options and strengthen their ability to make choices that are consistent with their values, interests, and talents.
What Girls Have to Say about Circles for Girls
- Before Girls Circle, I used to keep things from my mom and my teachers, and now I’m more open and social…like my mom or my favorite teacher, I tell them what’s going on…
- If there was a problem, I used to yell a lot …after Girls Circle I learned how to hear other people’s perspective and what they think…I figure out why they’re upset and try to fix it.
- [Circles for Girls] helped me feel better about myself because I learned who my true friends are…I paid attention to how other see me and now I just don’t really care….I’m my own person and I am who I am.
- Our circle made me realize I have to give respect first to get respect back.
- …back then (before Circles for Girls), I don’t know why…I didn’t feel comfortable going up to girls and talking to them if I didn’t know them and now I feel more comfortable and being more nice…
- Now I’m awesome and I have awesome friends who have awesome hearts.