Rhonda L. Lindon-Hammon tells the story of a 12-year-old girl who, fresh from a day of the YWCA’s Rosie’s Girls camp last summer, fixed her home’s leaking toilet. One of her peers helped a neighbor cut up a tree that had fallen during a storm. Yet another, this a 13-year-old participant, took off her bedroom doorknob and fixed its lock so she could have privacy from her three young brothers.
“She has waited months for the maintenance department to respond to her mother’s request for repairs,” says Lindon-Hammon, director of Youth Services and Girls Inc., for the YWCA. “These girls are empowered!”
named after the Rosie the Riveter campaign to empower working women during World War II, has been a part of the YWCA’s summer offerings for 11 to 13-year-olds since 2008. So far, more than 90 young Rosie’s have been through the program, which includes carpentry and a host of other trades as well as arts and phys ed activities. Through it all, a powerful message is reinforced: you are strong, you are powerful, you can accomplish what you set your mind to do.
“Our girls are being raised in a sexually saturated society that makes it clear to girls that their most important contribution is how they look,” Lindon-Hammon says. “When girls attend this camp, they do things they never dreamed they would ever do and their self-esteem soars.”
• Sponsor a Rosie’s Girl
. Donate $107 for one day of camp for one girl; $48 for a toolkit; $35 for work boots; $22 for a hammer and saw; or $10 for a hard hat and safety glasses.
• Sign your Rosie up for the camp.
• Like the YWCA on Facebook.
By Elissa Yancey
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