In Their Own Words: Strong Women Strong Girls

As a part of our ongoing series highlighting strong mentor-mentee relationships, last month we celebrated Women’s History Month with the privilege of speaking with Strong Women Strong Girls’ Program Manager, Minh Nguyen. Minh shared with us some wonderful quotes and anecdotes from the mentors and mentees of her program. While SWSG uses a group model rather than the one on one model employed by most organizations, the relationships the program fosters are just as meaningful as any other.

From the Mentees:

  • "Every [SWSG] session we have makes me feel like a different person every makes me a better person inside and out."

  • "I want people to know I have fun doing SWSG."

From the Mentors:

  • “At the end of every session, we tell the girls it's time to log off and they never want to, and we basically have to end the meeting for them to go. It's so nice that even after a day of Zoom school the girls have so much fun during SWSG that they want to stay on and continue spending time with us mentors, and we're glad everyone is able to have so much fun. A parent actually emailed me last week saying SWSG was a bright spot for her daughter during these tough times, and it's moments like these where I see we really are making a difference and having a positive impact, even if it's by simply providing a fun and safe space.”

  • “This semester I had a mentee who refused to unmute herself. She solely communicated through the chat. Near the end of the semester, she one day decided to unmute herself and began interacting with us. It became clear that we, the mentors, had created an inviting enough space for her to feel comfortable to open up with us. It was such a rewarding moment knowing we had empowered a mentee to engage.”

  • “When we had our last celebration and were talking about what we were celebrating and proud of, our mentee said that she was proud of all of us as mentors and she didn't want SWSG to end and hopes to meet us in person in the future.”

These are the kinds of powerful experiences that can change lives!

Sam Steed is the MMP AmeriCorps Ambassador of Mentoring Communications and Network Outreach Associate.