Each month, we feature a different girl from Girls Inc. of the Seacoast Area, a program of the Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center and an affiliate of Girls Incorporated®, a national research, education and direct advocacy organization that inspires girls to be strong, smart, and bold. This month, we are featuring Lila!

Lila is 12 years old, and this is her third year in the Girls Inc. of the Seacoast Area program at River Valley Charter School. She has participated in Summer Camp, and is now part of the Girls Inc. Advisory Group, which focuses on leadership. In Advisory Group, girls meet to discuss needs in their own communities, learn and take part in planning events, learn and practice skills to be a mentor, and train to be co-facilitators.

We asked Lila about her favorite hobby, how it has been for her while schools have been closed, and a few other questions about her experience with Girls Inc. Here is what she had to say:

You love baking – tell me how you first discovered you love to bake.

My mom has always been baking, so I really enjoyed baking with her.

What is your favorite thing to bake?

Donut muffins – it’s basically a donut in a muffin tin. It is coated with butter, sugar or cinnamon sugar. I found the recipe and made adaptations.

What is your favorite subject in school and why?

I really like Cultural because we learn about a lot of things and I love learning about different cultures. My teacher was in the Peace Corps in Zimbabwe and I love hearing about her experience.

Tell me about the fundraising you have done at school. What did you raise funds for? How did you do it?

I have done multiple fundraisers for Boston Children’s Hospital and one for Hurricane Maria survivors. Most of the fundraisers I have done are at school and I do it with a snack cart.

I also asked people to donate toys and books to the Boston Children’s Hospital but because of sanitary reasons we couldn’t donate the toys, so I set up a toy table and kids could buy the toys. The money raised went to Boston Children’s Hospital.

What is one important thing you have learned from Girls Inc.?

I’ve learned a lot about being able to share my feelings with others. It’s nice to have people to talk to outside of my family.

How have you stayed connected to Girls Inc. while schools have been closed?

We have weekly Zoom meetings. The other girls and I created a group chat so we can talk outside of the zoom meetings. I sometimes think about what we have talked about in Girls Inc.

Do you have any role models, or someone you look up to?

I have a few:

  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg, because she is strong and independent,
  • My mom, because she is nice, patient and good at a lot of things
  • Millie Bobby Brown, because she became successful at a young age
  • Lizzo, because she is very positive and spreads positives messages about body image.

What do you hope you are doing 10 years from now?

In 10 years, I hope that I am majoring in something I enjoy at a good college. I also hope I am still doing things I love and being with my family.

Girls Inc. inspires all girls to be strong, smart, and bold, through programming and advocacy. We asked Lila how she feels she encompasses these three important qualities:

How are you strong? I am strong because I have stood up for people and I have worked on not being so sensitive, and not letting things getting under my skin so much.

How are you smart? I am smart because I am very innovative (I made a swing!) and I’m making lip balms.

How are you bold? I am bold because I stand up for what I believe in and speaking out. I have gained confidence. This year I have started singing in front of people, even though I am shy.

Contribute to the Girls Inc. of the Seacoast Area

The Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center believes that girls are stronger, more confident and less likely to become victims of domestic violence when they are empowered through education. We currently offer Girls Inc. of the Seacoast Area programs for girls in the following Massachusetts towns: Amesbury, Georgetown, Groveland, Ipswich, Merrimac, Newbury, Newburyport, Rowley, Salisbury and West Newbury.

Girls Inc. of the Seacoast area is an affiliate of Girls Incorporated®, a national research, education and direct advocacy organization that inspires girls to be strong, smart, and bold. The Girls Inc. national network includes research-based curricula delivered by trained professionals to equip girls to achieve academically; to lead healthy and physically active lives; to manage money; to navigate media messages; and to discover an interest in science, technology, engineering, art and math.

Thank you to the year-long sponsors of the Girls Inc. of the Seacoast Area: