Last weekend, I had the HONOR of conducting part of a workshop titled: “Girls with Pearls’ Guys with Ties.” This workshop was geared toward young girls and young men ages 8-17. The pearl reference is to show the girls the correlation between the priceless, incomparable value of pearls, and the value of themselves. The title of our segment was “Remaining Pure in an Impure World,” where we presented Own Your Peach. It had been quite some time since I allowed God to use me in this way, so I was somewhat nervous. However, that was eliminated the moment we arrived!!
For the elementary school age girls, we had the girls create self-portraits. The point of this was to get them to see how they view themselves, and why. It was also to remind them of the importance to see themselves the way God sees them, beautiful inside and out. The early adolescent period is crucial for a girl’s emotional and psychological development. We must dig deep and consistently reinforce positive, healthy self-concepts. They need to be reminded of their worth and value, especially because images they see in the media fails to do this. The third point of this exercise was to show them that how we view ourselves, whether good or bad, impacts our lives at school, with family, friends, etc. At the end of the activity, we had the girls present their self-portrait in front of the rest of the group. This was great to see because initially, the girls were apprehensive about speaking in front of the large group. But it was amazing to see the encouragement that they showed one another throughout this unfamiliar process.
The middle school girls had a different activity. We played a unique game of BINGO. Some of the BINGO pieces said things like “believes sex is a bad thing,” “believes that God loves us no matter what,” and “loves chocolate.” The point of these BINGO pieces was to open up and encourage a conversation between the girls and their mothers about sex, abstinence, and purity. That is one of the goals for Own Your Peach. Not just to encourage abstinence, but to create a community that encourages open dialogue between young girls and women about the struggles they face. This BINGO game was successful because everyone left encouraged, light-hearted, and empowered to continue the conversation.
Finally, we met with the high school girls, where the conversation got deep. We discussed bullying, premarital sex and the emotional consequences, and the importance of positive relationships among young women. We also dialogued about Own Your Peach’s up-and-coming website relaunch, goals and events. We also discussed the mission of Own Your Peach which seeks to meet girls and women at whatever life stage they are in; regardless of their religious affiliation or lack thereof. The girls also had an opportunity to share their input regarding what services and outreach programs they would benefit from through Own Your Peach. This part of the workshop was especially powerful because myself and one of our other mentors had the opportunity to share our personal experiences coming into adult womanhood. We always seek to empower, encourage and provide a safe, transparent, relatable space for the girls to belong and connect.
Although I always seek to be an encouragement to the girls we are privileged to meet. However, they never cease to amaze and encourage me to continue striving to be the best version of myself.
Until next time…check out some pictures below from our successful event. The remaining photos are posted on the Own Your Peach website.
All in all, God graced us with a successful event and we CANNOT WAIT for the official relaunch of the website!! Stay tuned. Hit follow and be the FIRST to know!
Elementary-age girls 🙂
Middle school-age ladies 🙂
We love silly pics! Some of us anyway. lol
High school ladies in deep thought…
High school ladies with one of the grandmothers/gracious event hosts
Final silly pic 🙂