November announces the start of the holiday season when calendars start to bulge with social engagements and hectic “to do” lists. More than just the gateway to retail insanity, November is the time of year when we, ideally, gear up for a healthy stretch devoted to reflection and connection; it’s a time of year that urges us to slow down, take stock, and practice more mindful giving—both to ourselves and to others. “Give” and “gratitude” are two of our favorite words as you’ll find out from our fantastic Prizeo fundraising campaign with Sophia Bush, our participation in the ESPNw Summit, and in our super fun November #THATgratitudeGIRL challenge!
BEST Campaign EVER!: It’s not too late to get involved in our amazing fundraising campaign with Prizeo and Sophia Bush. YOU can win the chance to SKYDIVE with Sophia! Imagine that status update. Free falling not your thing? No worries, you can choose to hang out with Sophia on the set of her new show, Chicago PD instead. Funds raised from this campaign will go to build more than 50 IATG Local Chapters. All you have to do is donate to the campaign and you will be entered for a chance to win! AND you can get some other cool prizes depending on how much you choose to donate – an exclusive t-shirt, a signed photo from Sophia, even a phone call, to name a few! Donations start at just $10. Help grow IATG, get to meet one of Hollywood’s most fantastic stars—it’s a win-win for everyone!
AND Claire’s Inc. has so generously agreed to match every dollar of donations up to Sophia’s $75k goal, which means your donation will have DOUBLE the impact. We couldn’t be more thrilled! Visit Prizeo.com/Sophia to learn more and to enter.
Image from prizeo.com/sophia
IATG at the ESPNw Summit: For the past three years, the world’s most innovative thought leaders have gathered to raise the bar in their commitment to create change and opportunity for women in sports. Our Co-Founder Emily Greener took part in this amazing summit as part of an interactive panel discussion titled “Female-focused Non-Profits: Making an Impact.” Moderated by National Soccer Hall of Famer and ESPN commentator Julie Foudy and including Kathryn Olsen, CEO Women’s Sports Foundation, Marlene Bjornsrud, CEO Bawsi, and Katie Kotkins of Cycle for Survival, the panel conducted a discussion around the roles of their organizations in impacting women both inside and outside of sports. “I continue to be shocked at how empowering it is to sit alongside others who are doing amazing things and completely have each other’s backs,” said Emily. “At an event filled with people in competitive sports, all I felt was collaboration.”
Image courtesy Emily Greener
#THATgratitudeGIRL Challenge!: This November we're calling on YOU to show us your gratitude, to broadcast your "I'm super thankful fors," to let the world know who or what makes you feel fortunate from roots to boots. It's super simple and will fill you with so much ooey gooey smiley goodness: Each Thursday take a minute (or more) out of your day to reflect on a point of gratitude, share it on your Twitter, Instagram, or social of choice using the designation #THATgratefulGIRL, and inspire others. That's it! We'll be highlighting and sharing the love on our social so be on the lookout and have fun!
Image from fatyouthguy.com
Celebrating the International Day of the Girl Child: October 11 marked the International Day of the Girl Child with this year’s focus on empowering girls through education. IATG celebrated with a power up slumber party of amazing women who came together to share their visions for a world made bold by smart, capable, empowered women free to create, collaborate, and contribute without restriction, without retribution for their gender. The evening was a fun and inspired lead-in to watching a group Google Hangout in the wee hours of the morning hosted by UNICEF.
Image courtesy Emily Greener
That's all for now! Be sure to stick around and check out our latest features on THAT GIRL SPEAKS, THAT GIRL/GUY, and all the outstanding and inspiring articles from our roster of IATG contributors over on the IATG Blog.
Stay #beautyFULL, all!
We are falling hard for Fall (and we don’t just mean relishing in the return of our favorite TV shows like The Mindy Project and Scandal), but by taking time to take stock of the gifts that come with the changing of the season: cute, new fashion trends, hot pumpkin-laced drinks, Halloween costume-making-hangs, and a renewed commitment to see yourself, to really see yourself, as the amazing, beautyFULL, brave, imperfectly perfect person that you are! This is an ongoing pledge we here at Team IATG make to ourselves and each other every day and that we strive to reflect in the videos, articles, and special series featured on our gorgeous new website. If you have not had the chance to spend time over at iamthatgirl.com, please do! Thanks to the incredibly hard work and ongoing support of Rhonda Pitman and Christel Sayegh, our outstanding tech and design consultants from Magic Plus Logic, we are continuing to refine and develop our site to make sure it remains your go-to destination for inspiration, empowerment, important conversations, and fun!
And speaking of fun, I AM THAT GIRL is bursting with it these days. Here are some highlights:
I AM THAT GIRL: THE BOOK!: That's right! We are over the moon to share the good juju that our co-founder, Alexis Jones, has penned her first book all about speaking your own truth, discovering your innate purpose, and BE-ing THAT GIRL who will change the world. "If ever there were a time for our generation to step up to the plate, to carry the torch of the women who came before us, to wreak havoc, to ask ourselves, 'Why not us?' it's now," says Alexis. As if you didn't have enough incentive to jam on this important read, here's one more: 10% of book profits will go to benefit I AM THAT GIRL! Pre-order your copy HERE! Alexis says: "Our generation is criticized for being the most entitled in history. I think that's the greatest problem we could possibly fave because that means we are a generation of girls who actually think we can change the world. But before we get too big for our britches (as my Texas father would say), we have to humbly recognize Gandhi's powerful advice--we can't just talk about it, tweet about it, or post it on one of our many social media outlets, we have to be it. This book is my attempt to inspire that girl in you: that girl who has the potential to create magic, to ignite change, and to inspire the world."
Image courtesy of Alexis Jones
YOU + Prizeo + Sophia Bush= Total IATG Awesomeness: We are excited and honored to be part of a Prizeo campaign with one of our most favorite actresses and activists Sophia Bush. You know and love Sophia from her One Tree Hill days, but do you also know that she has been one of IATG's most vocal supporters? Beginning October 14th, Sophia teams up with Prizeo, an incredibly slick enterprise that helps organizations raise funds through celebrity-driven campaigns that give a random, ordinary individual (aka YOU) a once-in-a-lifetime experience. For the cost of a dollar raffle ticket, you can be entered to win a trip to meet Sophia and partake in one of her all-time favorite activities (wait for it): SKYDIVING! Tumbling out of a plane not your thing? (Fair enough, but think of the FB status update! Think of the Instagram!! Kidding..ish) Not to worry, as an alternate experience, you can meet up with Sophia on the set of her new show, Chicago PD to watch her and the amazing cast and crew making television magic! Funds raised will go to help launch new IATG local chapters in cities across the country (maybe in YOUR city). Visit prizeo.com/sophia to get all the details and find out how YOU can have some fun while making a difference in the IATG community!
Image from Philip Veugeler
IATG Goes to BeautyCon: In your hands, beauty is whatever you make it out to be and the people behind BeautyCon provide all the tools you need to explore your fun, funky, fabulous beautyFULL self. BeautyCon is a fashion and beauty summit that brings together top digital industry influencers for a three-day event of panels, networking, shopping, and social opportunities in Los Angeles, California. IATG was proud to be a part of this event with a table where we made literature, stickers, and tee-shirts available and with the help of four IATG “girl ambassadors,” incredible 13-year-old girls who circulated through the event talking with other girls and young women about what it means to BE THAT GIRL. IATG participated in the Content Before Panel with the topic “Haters Gonna Hate-Dealing With Negative Comments” where the amazing Susie Castillo spoke on our behalf. The experience was overwhelmingly positive and uplifting; we’d like to give a special thank-you to Moj Mahdara, the owner of Made With Elastic, an innovative strategic advisory firm, for inviting us to be a hands-on participant in this fantastic and inspired event!
IATG Girl Ambassadors at BeautyCon. Image courtesy of Julianna Reed
Get Psyched for International Day of the Girl, October 11: In 2011 The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution to declare October 11 the International Day of the Girl Child in an effort to recognize girls’ rights and the unique challenges girls around the world encounter. The day is both a call to action and an attempt to focus attention on creating lasting change to empower girls and ensure their basic human rights are fulfilled. We LOVE the International Day of the Girl because we live the principles of this mission every day. This year’s theme is “Innovating for Girls’ Education.” Knowledge is power and girls’ access to education, technology, mentor relationships, and partnerships can make the difference between a life unbound by opportunity and one restricted by ignorance. Check your local news outlets for hometown organizations such as your local Boys and Girls Club or Girl Scouts of America that are hosting events or opportunities to get involved and help make a difference on this important day. You can also rally a group of gal (and guy) besties and create your own activity to help change a girls' future on this important day: host an educational book drive, volunteer at an after-school reading or study program, or check out an amazing organization like Pencils of Promise that helps build schools in developing nations and lend some support. There is no wrong way to mark the day! And as always, we'll be hosting our own kind of call to awareness and involvement right here on our site, so be sure to check in!
Image from www.plan.org.au
Thanks for reading, supporting, and for being one amazing, beautyFULL community of girls and women changing the world! Stick around on our site to check out more from the Blog and more of our features like THAT GIRL/THAT GUY, THAT GIRL SPEAKS, and THAT GIRL ROCKS!
Awhile back when I visited my former middle school, I encountered a 12-year-old girl who summed it up perfectly. âSnooki is so out,â she said. âShe makes us all look stupid, when really, weâre smart girls with a lot more to talk about than hair, clothes and the latest guy weâre dating.â There are few moments in my professional life when the darkness and overwhelmingly uphill battle is set ablaze by a bright light and a momentary glimpse of hope. You see, battling the big, bad world of media and the negative depictions of women, the dumb girl syndrome that gets splattered on the cover of tabloids, not to mention the myriad of vapid female characters in TV and movies, leaves me slightly depressed. All that being said, the pendulum is finally swinging its way back and itâs about damn time.
Running an empowerment nonprofit for women is one thing, but building a community in order to battle the epidemic of insecurity plaguing our great nation’s girls is another. We at I AM THAT GIRL (IATG) believe that real change is possible. Our mission of inspiring girls to discover their innate worth and purpose is something we strive for, but competing with the media’s negative influence on our girls is an epic undertaking. We're rather resilient (a euphemism for down-right stubborn) at IATG headquarters, though, so four years ago when the vision was created to ignite the 21st Century women’s movement, we had all the faith in the world that by using media as a vehicle to positively influence girls, we could create a shift in confidence.
Last October, the highest honor was afforded us as we were invited to the White House to discuss this rather tenacious Healthy Media Initiative of ours. Inviting influential individuals in new and traditional media (Kristen Bell, Sophia Bush and Megan & Liz to name a few), we presented a campaign concept to prove that media could be used to inspire confidence in women. The campaign was called That Girl Rocks, and it asked everyone to give a video shout-out to "that girl" in their life they love and admire. We were hoping it would catch on, and catch on it did. The day of the launch we were shocked at the staggering numbers as celebrities tweeted out #thatgirlrocks, attaching videos they had made for their mom, sisters, daughters and friends. Our numbers and influencers who jumped onboard are proof that the shift is finally here.
It wasn’t until after our campaign launch when we were featured on The Huffington Post, Glamour.com and Womenâs Health magazine that we officially deemed our initiative a success. Numbers don’t begin to grasp the validation in the form of video submissions as well as the strangers who stumbled upon our site and wound up sending in a video of their own. It’s slightly ironic that the new taboo is shifting toward things like integrity, modesty and authentic confidence; but we certainly don’t mind.
We humbly recognize that the battle has just begun. It will take lifetimes to shift the titanic-size media influence we’re up against. This may merely be the tip of the iceberg and we may have not so much as scratched the surface, but we are one step closer to showing media makers that sex may sell, but so does healthy, savvy, dynamic and meaningful media. We have a generation of girls who, alongside I AM THAT GIRL, believe smart is the new sexy.
So game on, healthy media because this is just the beginning.Lead image courtesy of Idiotsandgenious.blogspot.com
Amy Kuney didn't exactly have a "normal" upbringing. When she was 13-years-old, her family moved to Honduras as missionaries, which resulted in quite a bit of culture shock. "One moment I was busy doing homework and planning slumber parties, the next moment I suddenly found myself in a third world country recovering from a hurricane," Amy explains on her Web site.
The burgeoning singer/songwriter managed to channel all her challenges into her music, though and found an outlet to come to terms with her past. Her thought-provoking track, "Gasoline Rainbows" focuses on the environment and was part of a compilation album put together by One Tree Hill star, Sophia Bush with 100% of the proceeds from iTunes going toward Global Green. The engaging video forces viewers to witness the growth of industry as it takes over the natural world.
Even though she's had trying times often reflected in the heavy subject matter of her melodies, Amy still has a pretty optimistic view of the world.
"I feel certain that we do not have control over what happens to us, but we DO have control over how it affects us," she writes. "We can choose to be the victim of our circumstances, or we can choose to use our circumstances as fuel to rise above."
Watch the enlightening video for "Gasoline Rainbows" below then check out I AM THAT GIRL's YouTube channel. While you're there, don't forget to tune into our Music Mondays playlist, which is updated every week.
Image courtesy of Iconvsicon.com