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Globally, black girls disproportionately face social conditions like teen pregnancy, gender-based violence (GBV) & HIV; and disadvantages based on location, race, ethnicity and socioeconomic status impede them from transforming their lives.
Both being born and raised in blighted communities in Baltimore, we understand the difference that exposure and opportunity make. We believe that when girls are properly guided and inspired, they can become the women they are destined to be because they are the girls that we used to be.
In the inaugural year, sponsors and donors believed in our vision and their generosity enabled us to create Black Girls Global Exchange (BGGE), a revolutionary peer learning and cross-cultural exchange for American and African girls to tackle global issues through arts and service which included an exchange week.
We were planning our second BGGE Exchange Week in Johannesburg and Eswatini, April 2 - April 11, 2020, with our 11 dynamic Cohort 2 BGGE ambassadors. Unfortunately, those plans, including our major fundraiser, were disrupted by Covid-19 global pandemic. We remain committed to the mission and hope to be able to travel as planned in 2021.
Until then, we wanted to ensure that our ambassadors understood our purpose as BGGE, which was not just to travel. We needed to keep our ambassadors engaged with each other, building sisterhood and connecting through discussions and projects relating to current events in our communities and how we are all impacted by these events. As a result, we transitioned to virtual sessions which include our Cohort 2 ambassadors in Baltimore and Eswatini. We meet on a bi-weekly basis via zoom where sisterhood is at the core of what we do as our girls get to connect with their sisters across the globe. We have powerful sessions where we create lessons and activities for our ambassadors to build from. Our sessions are changing the lives of our girls one session at a time. We see the growth in our girls, and our girls and their families see this growth.
Our ambassador s are also accomplishing goals constantly and supporting and celebrating each other's success. We have ambassadors who are preparing for high school graduation while applying to college; ambassadors who are working part-time jobs; ambassadors who have been awarded scholarships to support with their academic career; ambassadors who have earned honor roll constantly, and continuing this accomplishment during virtual learning; ambassadors who are serving within their community and school virtually; all while maintaining their well-being during a pandemic that they have never experienced in their lifetime. They are game-changers and they are leading the way. According to our ambassadors, here is what BGGE is to them:
By investing in the girls today through cross-cultural experiences in places where they are confronted with undistorted truths, we create future leaders for tomorrow. But, we cannot do it without your help! The world needs smart, conscientious young people who are willing to dream big. Our ambassadors are just that! They are phenomenal Black girls who will change the narrative for Black girls and women worldwide! Your support will allow us to continue our virtual exchange program and help us with the opportunity to expand our virtual program for Black girls all over until we can safely begin planning for travel again. No donation is too big or too small! Thank you in advance for supporting world changers!
Yours in BGGE,
Dawnita and Regina
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