It was such an amazing experience for me and my daughter. I found the curriculum to be spot-on!

Andrea, 4-5 Parent/Daughter Workshop Participant

Mission

We equip girls with the skills to exercise the power of their voice.

Values

We structure our work around four central values: Authentic Communication, Courageous Growth, Equity, and Play.

What Makes Us Unique?

1) Girls Leadership works not only with girls, but also with their primary influencers – parents, teachers, and caregivers – to create sustainable impact. Studies show parents and teachers to be the most powerful teachers for girls all the way through high school.

2) We put social and emotional learning (SEL) at the foundation of all our leadership development.

3) We see girls’ real-life, every-day relationships with friends and family as the primary opportunity we have to teach girls the leadership skills that will serve them over a life-time: self-advocacy, negotiation, compromise, personal responsibility and conflict as an opportunity for change.

Strategy

There are 25 million K-12th grade girls in the United States. If you combine the efforts of all national girl-serving organizations, we are only reaching about three million, or about 12% of girls. That means 22 million girls in the US aren’t being reached. Girls Leadership’s bold goal is to close that gap. Girls Leadership is collaborating with other organizations to elevate the girl-serving field, deepen our knowledge, and broaden our reach so that every single one of those 25 million girls has the awareness, skills and confidence to live as everyday leaders.

Definitions

GIRL

At Girls Leadership we recognize that gender is a reflection of identity, biology, and expression. We welcome anyone who self-identifies as girl or young woman. We aren’t in the business of determining anyone’s gender. That decision is the right of every individual.

LEADERSHIP

At Girls Leadership we define leadership as knowing who you are, what you believe, and being able to express your beliefs effectively to influence others. We see girls’ everyday relationships with friends, family, and peers as leadership opportunities. Leadership isn’t reserved for those few individuals who land in formal roles, such as team captain, or class president, but is a way of life that every girl can live every day. Our goal is to equip every girl with the courage, skills, and community to exercise the power of her voice.

Locations

Our headquarters office is located in Oakland, California and we run in-person programs across the country. Our renowned residential summer program is held at Cate School in Carpinteria, California, and our workshops and parent education talks take place across California, Colorado, New Jersey and New York. With our growing library of online resources, we hope to expand our work across geographic, class, and racial boundaries to impact as many girls as possible.

Press

The New York Times

How to Help Your Child Not Be a #MeToo. Rachel Simmons says, “It’s up to us to say, ‘I believe your feelings and you should too,’ because self advocacy can only happen when you authorize your own feelings.”

Megyn TODAY

Rachel Simmons talked about how she learned from mistakes to achieve success, and why parents must share their own mistakes and apologize in front of kids too.

Rachel Simmons on Good Morning America

Good Morning America

Rachel Simmons weighs in on a Dutch woman who faces down her catcallers by posting selfies with them, using social media as a tool to take back her own power.

Rachel Simmons on GMA talks about girl scouts boy scouts

Good Morning America

Are the Boy Scouts trying to recruit girls away from the Girl Scouts? Rachel Simmons on why girls and boys need single sex spaces to be themselves, with each other.

New York Times

6 Things Parents Should Know About Sending Kids Back to School. If your child is sad about leaving camp friends or worried about the academic pressures of the next grade level, hear her out — and show empathy. Then, avoid the knee-jerk reaction to fix everything. Instead, ask your child to brainstorm ways to make the situation better.

Wharton Business Radio Highlights

Managing Self-Expectations and the Potential to Fail. Rachel Simmons joins host Laura Zarrow to discuss how women can learn to “fail well” and become more assertive and self-aware.

Atlantic everday sexism in a post feminist world

The Atlantic

Everyday Sexism in a ‘Post-Feminist’ World. Pop culture tells girls they can do anything, but the messages they experience in the classroom tell a different story. Organizations like Girls Leadership are providing solutions.

image by Lauren Lancaster for The New York Times

New York Times

On Campus, Failure Is on the Syllabus. A Smith College initiative with Rachel Simmons called “Failing Well” is one of a crop of university
programs that aim to help high achievers cope with basic setbacks.

Rachel Simmons on Good Morning America

Good Morning America

How to help children learn resilience through failure. GMA interviewed Rachel Simmons about concepts in her upcoming book, Enough as She Is.

Parents Magazine

6 Ways to Be a Strong Role Model for Your Daughter “There is so much pressure to put other people’s feelings and needs ahead of our own—and we need to change the messaging for the next generation of women,” says Simone Marean

CNN Parents

Body image: Are girls’ clothes sending wrong message to kids? (Opinion) “Self-consciousness goes up with the more skin you are baring and the more shape you are showing.. Your body becomes an object that others can have access to, and we know that self-objectification begins really early,” said Rachel Simmons.

Outside Magazine

The Girl Scouts Is Raising Our Next Generation of Rippers “If we can build bravery skills, then they’ll have the internal capacity to recover from failure and go back out there and try again,” Marean says. Pain and rejection will happen; being in nature can help girls find solace, strength, and inspiration.

Fortune

Gloria Steinem: There Is No Such Thing As ‘White Feminism’ At an intimate fundraising dinner held Thursday evening in New York City to benefit non-profit Girls Leadership, Steinem spoke at length about the perception that silos that exist between black and white feminists.

On Parenting

Want to raise empowered women? Start in middle school. Practical tips for empowering middle schoolers, featuring Co-Founder Rachel Simmons & more.

The Huffington Post

Want to Raise a Rocket Scientist? 20 Holiday Gifts to Give Girls a Head Start. Featuring Girls Leadership Parent & Daughter Book Club.

Forbes

How DonorsChoose, She’s The First And Girls Leadership Built Their Brands. “Over the years we’ve learned to trust our audience,” says Simone Marean. “Now we do our best to give away content every day.”

Washinton Post On Parenting

The art of saying no: How to raise kids to be polite, not pushovers. Common courtesy shouldn’t outweigh common sense. Help your kids learn how to say no. Interview with Cofounder Simone Marean.

The Enthusiasm Enthusiast

Katie Ward interviewed our co-founder Simone Marean on why it’s time to retire the term “mean girls,” and why the princess phase doesn’t mean the end of feminism as we know it.

Parents Magazine

Is Your Kid Ready for a Best Friend? Whether your child has a BFF, wants one, or isn’t yet clued in to the concept, these tips will help you teach her what true friendship entails.

New Canaan Advertiser

About 100 parents gathered at the New Canaan Library on March 8 to hear Simone Marean talk about Raising Resilient Girls in the Digital Age, hosted by LiveGirl

Adventure Nannies

One of our Adventure Nannies, Aryn, works as an educator with Girl’s Leadership, so we sat down with her to learn more about this life-changing organization.

KQED’s Forum

Encouraging Girls to Face Fear, Take Risks and Seek Adventure. Host Mina Kim interviewed Simone Marean and “The Gutsy Girl: Escapades for Your Life of Epic Adventure” author Caroline Paul.

The Cavalier

Parents help girls change the world. Girls Leadership encourages interaction between girls and parents to help girls cope with the challenges they may face, as well as increase social and emotional intelligence.

The Record

More than 300 parents came to Pascack Valley High School in Hillsdale, NJ to hear how they can be better role models in influencing the emotional and intellectual lives of their daughters.

San Jose Mercury News

There are some unsettling trends in girl dynamics today, Simone Marean told hundreds of parents and students attending Tuesday night’s Piedmont Education Speaker Series called “Raising Resilient Girls.”

How to Keep Girls Raising Their Voices

Mashable

7 Skills to Teach Your Daughter by Age 13. Rachel Simmons on how parents can help girls through the pressure of tween life.

Glamour Magazine

How Embracing Failure Can Be a Stepping Stone to Success. Teach young women there is value in failure—even more so than in success—if you fail chasing a dream, taking a risk, or trying something new.

Fortune Magazine

Why This Nonprofit Wants to Help Girls Fail. Want more female leaders? Lose the pressure for perfection. Fortune’s article of Simone Marean’s interview with Lauren Schiller.

NYT Motherlode

Why Your Kids Love Snapchat, and Why You Should Let Them, by Rachel Simmons

Inflection Point with Lauren Schiller

We all want our sons and daughters to grow up strong and independent, but how do we ensure that ‘having it all’ doesn’t mean ‘doing it all’? Lauren Schiller interviewed Simone Marean.

Good Morning America

Sesame Street’s 1st Muppet With Autism Aims to End Stigma, Promote Understanding. Rachel Simmons says Julia, the newest Muppet, can teach all kids empathy.

Good Morning America

Rachel Simmons on Good Morning America talking about why girls tend to take failure harder than boys, and what parents can do to help them manage failure.

girl with blue jacket

Parents Magazine

The Secret to Raising a Happy, Confident Girl. While girls’ levels of academic achievement have risen, their rates of stress, anxiety, and depression have risen as well.

The Tampa Tribune

Target aisles losing gender designations, and Simone Marean weighed in.

Bustle.com

7 Summer Camps Empowering Girls That You Should Support (Or Attend)

SheKnows

Pixar’s Inside Out offers the chance for parents and their children to have meaningful and impactful conversations surrounding emotional health.

smiling girl covered with colors

One Thing New

Why you should embarrass your kids, and how conflict as an opportunity for change is a radical concept for girls.

Ronnie’s Awesome List

Ronnie and Simone talked about the pressures on middle school girls, what’s available for boys’ social emotional learning, and our goals to reach 25 million girls.

KQED: Girls and the Ambition Gap

Hear Co-Founder and Executive Director Simone Marean talk about girls and the ambition gap, with best-selling author Peggy Orenstien and About Face’s Jennifer Berger.

TEDx Women

Watch Co-Founder Rachel Simmons give a Tedx Talk about girls leadership.