Celebrating 25 Years on International Day of the Girl
Letter from Girls Inc. of NYC CEO, Pamela J. Maraldo, Ph.D.
On this International Day of the Girl, I want to thank YOU, our supporters, for tirelessly walking with us to build a more equitable world for girls and young women everywhere.
This fall marks 25 years since Girls Inc. of New York City first opened our doors through a partnership with Central Park East High School in East Harlem, providing much needed healthy sexuality programming.
Over the last 25 years you helped make incredible things happen:
We expanded from one school to more than 150 schools.
We grew from serving 50 students to more than 10,000 students per year.
We launched several innovative signature programs responsive to the needs of NYC girls and young women, including digitized programs in mental health, data analytics, and financial literacy.
We created Project REACH, making Girls Inc. of NYC the first Girls Inc. affiliate in the nation to provide a college completion program. Our first full cohort graduated college in 2023!
We launched our first citywide conference reaching more than 1,000 girls.
Because of you, Girls, Inc. of New York City is making a major difference in the lives of girls across the city. Because investing in girls has broader benefits, our work is vital to the health of New York City as well!
As we look forward to the next 25 years, we ask you to join us in addressing the new and persisting challenges facing girls and young women today, including the growing teen mental health crisis; threats to sexual and reproductive rights; the changing economic and workforce landscape, requiring a new modus operandi; and the reversal of affirmative action and its ramifications for DEI efforts everywhere.
This fall, we will launch a Growth Campaign to raise funds to address these challenges through 5 strategic priorities over the next 3 years:
1. Increasing access to mental health education for adolescent girls. As the mental health crisis among adolescent girls rages on, our one-of-a-kind Mind Body Matters program gives girls the tools to take charge of their mental health.
2. Increasing girls’ financial capabilities. Launched in schools last year, our updated Her Future financial literacy curriculum demystifies financial concepts and offers practical ways for adolescent girls to budget, save, and invest their money; we will pilot the mobile app later this year. 3. Increasing college completion and career readiness. College admission and retention rates among our participants remain above 90%—significantly higher than the national average. In the next phase of Project Accelerate, we’re working with corporations to acquire internships and apprenticeships that will help young women land attractive positions. 4. Increasing pathways for girls to experience our programs. In addition to extending our programs to new schools and networks, and holding our citywide conference, we aim to make programs available through virtual experiences, including webinars and podcasts, to all girls who need them. 5. Increasing organizational growth and sustainability. Sustainability is critical as we continue to grow into a major New York City institution; we will build our reserves so we can continue to serve more girls in the decades ahead.
As the giving season approaches next month, please consider supporting our Growth Campaign. Investing in girls’ education transforms communities and cities. Girls who receive a Girls Inc. of NYC education are less likely to marry young and more likely to lead healthy, productive lives. They’ll earn higher incomes, participate in the decisions that most affect them, and build better futures for themselves, their families, and New York.
Thank you for helping us build the future!