A few months ago, Antoinette, EFLI's Program Director headed out to visit GREEN EILEEN Seattle in Columbia City, WA. Part of the mission of the visit was to scout like minded organizations for partnership. It is part of the mission of GREEN EILEEN to utilize the profits of the sales of recycled clothing to support women and girls in their local communities. Following the visit, a few organizations were identified as potential partners, including, Y-WE, Young Women Empowered, whose mission is to empower young women from diverse backgrounds to step up as leaders in their schools, communities, and the world.
Atsuko S and Jado M wrote about their experience:
Last week, the Community Committee of EFLI's Youth Ambassador Board (YAB) had a successful digital exchange with the girls in the Y-WE program! We organized Laptops in such a way that allowed EFLI and Y-WE girls to have an online connection circle, an activity that both programs use in which participants answer questions to learn more about each other and their respective programs. Y-WE has a Youth Council similar to YAB which was a great feature that allowed us to connect with young women who had already participated in past programming.
For months, EFLI and Y-WE have been planning this online group chat, and today, the idea finally became a reality. We knew a using technology in this way could be a big challenge and despite a few technical difficulties, the digital exchange went extremely well.
Through the use of Google Hangout, each individual spoke about themselves and their personal thoughts about being involved in their community and leadership programs. Although located at opposites ends of the country, EFLI and Y-WE had many similarities in goals and ideas, which were very inspiring and exciting to learn. The differences that we possessed posed a new outlet and opportunity for growth. Learning from one another was another aspect of this exchange that was tremendously exciting. The girls on both sides of the screen were extremely friendly and open-minded, and the atmosphere was very accepting and positive. It was amazing to be able to build a larger community of supportive peers who were interested in getting to know more about one another.
Click through below to see more photos:
From here, YAB/EFLI hopes to stay in touch with Y-WE through various social media outlets and hopefully one day be able to meet each other in person. In the future, we hope to have more opportunities such as exchange letters or to create a scrapbook, which will allow us to exercise the creative resources within ourselves and the communities around us.
This has been an exciting first step to begin a collaborative project with an amazing group of people. We hope that together, EFLI and Y-WE will progress further to reach our goals to create change in our communities, our selves, and perhaps even the world.
Here is a little video showcasing the work of Y-WE: