Girls Give Back

A Leadership, Empowerment, and Service Learning
Program for Jewish Young Women

Generously supported by the Jewish Women's Foundation, Girls Give Back engages teen girls in fun, positive leadership and team-building activities and gives girls the opportunity to explore the community through hands-on service learning and advocacy projects. Girls Give Back promotes Jewish values and the importance of Tikkun Olam while developing social-mindedness, critical thinking, healthy self-esteem, and empathy in high school girls.

Girls Give Back Retreat 2013

Watch the Gala Tribute Video honoring
Barbary Bry and Girls Give Back>>

Learn More About...
Program Overview
Girls Give Back Highlights
Girls Give Back Action Areas
Girls Give Back in the News
Register for Girls Give Back

Program Overview

Girls Give Back empowers the next generation of female leaders to create meaningful change in the world around them. Teens learn about issues that impact women and girls, and develop leadership skills by planning service projects. Girls Give Back delivers high-impact programming that is sensitive to teen time constraints.

Girls Give Back with Susan Davis

“Girls Give Back is the most amazing program I have ever participated in! This program teaches valuable leadership skills, instills a strong sense of confidence, and educates teens about issues that women face all over the world! The friends I have made and the things we have accomplished are truly remarkable.”
Girls Give Back Participant

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Girls Give Back Highlights

In the past year, Girls Give Back teens:

  • Volunteered more than 1,700 hours, earning the President’s Gold Volunteer Service Award.
  • Organized a middle-school girls empowerment program, Girls Unite!, for Jewish tweens in grades 6-8.
  • Created a 50-foot mural for the San Diego Airport on the historic and contemporary struggles facing women and girls.
  • Designed an advocacy campaign around the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) and successfully secured three co-sponsors, including Susan Davis.
  • Participated in a week-long experiential learning about homelessness and poverty in San Diego. Teens volunteered with eight different service providers to distribute food, work in shelters, and empower vulnerable teens.

Girls Give Back Action Areas

In order to create lasting change on the issue of gender equity, Girls Give Back teens identified several priority action items:

  1. Gender-based violence – Teens are working with Project SARAH to provide peer-to-peer trainings to high school students on healthy relationships and violence prevention. GGB worked closely with the SDSU Youth Violence Lab to design a unique, interactive training.
  2. Empowerment of young girls – GGB created a mentorship and empowerment program for middle school teens in grades 6-8 called Girls Unite! This middle school program is teen-designed and teen-facilitated
  3. Equal Rights Amendment – Youth involved with our advocacy committee are working closely with a group called, “United for Equality” in D.C. to help advance the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) and educate their peers on the ERA.

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Girls Give Back In the News!

The impact of the young women of Girls Give Back is everywhere. Starting now and running through January 2014, the art of Girls Give Back will be on display at the San Diego International Airport in Terminal 2 (pre-security). The Airport’s collection, “Myth of the West,” represents inspired, challenging, inventive ideas and interpretations of Western culture - past, present, or future; real or make-believe.

The Girls Give Back project focuses on femininity in Western culture and the struggle for women to find their place between traditional and modern ideas of what it means to be a woman. The teens partnered with Art Reach San Diego, who helped with the technical aspects of creating a 30 ft. mural. The piece includes a large central panel that the girls created collaboratively and then individual pieces centered on a positive word about women that each teen selected. Click the links below to view all four clips that aired on KUSI!

Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4

ECR SJSP Line Break

"Change Fueled by Girl Power." Click here to read the summer feature on Girls Give Back by Karla Peterson that appeared in San Diego’s Union Tribune. Michelle Jacobson and Jody Miller were featured in this story about how rewarding and life changing Girls Give Back is.

ECR SJSP Line Break

Girls Give Back teens made a guest appearance on UT-TV PrimeTime to discuss some of their current projects. The young women in Girls Give Back have been busy this summer creating a mural for the San Diego Airport, spending a week learning about homelessness and poverty in San Diego, and designing a mentorship program for middle school girls. Hear from Emma and Jody how this incredible program of Jewish Family Service has empowered them to be community leaders!

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Register for Girls Give Back

Girls Give Back offers programming in the summer and the school year.

  • School-Year Programming: Schedules and applications available July 1

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(858) 637-3023
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Turk Family Center
8804 Balboa Ave.
San Diego, CA 92123

All communication is strictly confidential.

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“I greatly enjoyed spending time with the girls and sharing with them. It was wonderful to hear the young ladies speak with such optimism and passion. They are definitely going places!”
Community Partner, Foundation for Women