YWCA of Kaua`i’s Girlz Zone offers programs designed to develop and strengthen confidence, courage, strength and communication skills in girls from the ages of 9-15. Research has shown that this is a key risk period for girls, who face major transitions such as advancing from elementary school to middle school and high school, and changes in physical development. Our vision is to enhance their abilities during this crucial time so they are able to take full advantage of their talents, academic interests, career pursuits, and potential for healthy relationships, as well as remaining free from drug and alcohol abuse.
Girlz Zone is tailored to meet the unique challenges girls face today, and offers fun and interactive teaching methods such as role playing, cooperative learning, games, small group activities and group discussions. Staff members help girls establish self-confidence and instill values that will help them live healthy successful lives through:
- education on harmful effects of tobacco, alcohol and other drugs
- activities to help families strengthen their bonds
- involvement of parents in the lives of their children
- opportunities for positive peer relationships, social development and competence
- activities that increase attachment to community and strengthen bonds with adults
Girlz Zone consists of three different, complementary, components where girls are free to express themselves in a safe and nurturing environment: Girlz Live, Girlz Unplugged and Girlz Dayz. Girls may choose to participate in any or all of the components.
This eight-week after-school program held at various schools around Kaua`i is designed to provide a fun and active learning environment that teaches critical life skills using a peer-teaching approach. Girls, peers, and adult program leader meet twice weekly to focus on topics that increase self-esteem, enhance parent-youth communication, and motivate girls to be physically active and develop resistance skills. This youth-led approach to healthier lifestyles uses a variety of methods to accommodate the different learning styles of girls.
This one-day workshop is offered to girls and their mothers or other adult role model to encourage preteen and early teenage girls to discuss various the topics that are important to them with the adults who matter the most. Our goal with Girlz Unplugged is to strengthen and clarify family expectations for behavior, promote family bonding, and teach skills to parents and girls to successfully so that they can meet the expectations of their family and resist drug use.
Girlz Unplugged includes an activity and/or community service project to increase the time that the parent and child spend together and further promote family bonding. Research has shown that positive parental involvement is an important protective factor that increases school success and buffers children against later problems such as substance abuse, violence, and risky sexual behaviors.
This five-day residential camp at beautiful Camp Sloggett offers girls a chance to participate in activities that are creative, fun and encourage physical activity, communication, teamwork, responsibility and healthy relationships. It is designed to foster self-esteem, help girls maintain authentic connection with peers and adult women in their community, counter trends toward self-doubt, and allow for self-expression through verbal sharing and creative activity. The goal is for each camper to leave camp at the end of their stay with new skills, new friends and knowledge necessary for a drug-free life. Staff and girls talk about issues such as being a girl, relationships, body image, goal setting, sexuality, substance abuse, economic literacy, competition and assertiveness skills. Special guests share their expertise in different activities.
Kauai`i Youth Network
Kaua`i Youth Network is a collaborative project between the Boys & Girls Club Hawaii – Kaua`i branch and the YWCA of Kaua`i. Through the Kaua`i Youth Network, a diverse group of youth 14 – 21 years old will have an opportunity to be part of planning activities for youth on Kaua`I, and will have a forum to learn, act and develop as leaders. Participants will be drawn from a balanced representation of all schools, neighborhoods and districts.
Although Kaua`i Youth Network will be youth led, the participants will be supported by adults, community leaders, business owners, and individuals who will lend their expertise to helping them fulfill their goals. Youth will be responsible for identifying community areas of interest and need where their learning and contribution will lead to the development of goals and solutions.
The outcome of this project will be youth who have developed a greater sense of worth and value. Youth participants will increase their levels of competency, become prepared to engage in fulfilling careers, educational opportunities and traditional practices, and become part of and contribute to a thriving community.