GHGH’s Girls Leadership Network met this past Saturday (February 7th, 2015) in order to draft a resolution to gain support for GHGH’s work & highlight social & emotional health as a priority for youth in Monterey County.
The youth leaders had a lot of momentum coming in to this meeting because of our Advocacy Training in January with the Youth Leadership Institute. Though we learned a lot from that training we still had a lot of work to do. Our 3 goals for the day included:
1. Drafting A Resolution for the Board of Supervisors
2. Creating A Timeline
3. Planning Strategies for How to Involve the Greater Community
What are we asking for ?
Support for GHGH programs and the work that we do. In order to gain support we highlight national data and trends, county wide data, and GHGH data about girls Social & Emotional health in Monterey County. If our resolution passes it would serve as leverage for our belief that providing social and emotional health resources for youth should be priority in Monterey County. But first…we need to gain support from people in power. Once we have that support, we have leverage, and we can ask for things that we really want….
What do we really want?
Positive social and emotional health for all girls in Monterey County. Positive social and emotional health is when all girls have positive self-esteem, coping skills, tools and resources to deal with life’s difficulties. We know that lack of social and emotional health skills, competencies, and resources is a root cause of many issues that limit individual’s success.
Why a resolution?
A resolution is a formal statement of support from people in power that can help move a cause into greater awareness and set up for future change efforts. We want to make long-lasting change for girls in Monterey County and in order to do that we need people in power (aka the Board of Supervisors) to support us.
February: Draft Resolution to Board of Supervisors
Early March: Youth leaders meet with county Supervisor Simon Salinas (District 3).
End of February to Mid-March: GHGH programs across the county will also be asking youth to sign a petition to support the passing of the Resolution. In addition to signing the petition, youth will have an opportunity to show their support by placing a “hand-stamp” seal of approval on our collective banner.
Mid-March: Youth leaders attend Board of Supervisors meeting to tell them the importance of passing the Resolution. Invite community members and the press to come and support!
Part of talking to people in power, like the Board of Supervisors, is being able to tell your story and convince people with your story. So, we took a little time to think about what our story was;
The youth leaders took a few moments to write a journal entry on what the definition of social and emotional health (when all girls have positive self esteem and coping skills, tools, resources to deal with life’s difficulties) means to them. Why do we care about having positive self-esteem? Girl leaders and educators shared very compelling personal stories about low self-esteem, eating disorders, and depression. Some elements of these stories may become part of our presentation to the Board of Supervisors.
For the next couple weeks GLN leaders will be collecting petition signatures and banner hand-stamps within their GHGH clubs and schools sites. Be sure to check in soon to see our approved resolution and dates for our presentation in front of the Board of Supervisors. The Tentative date is Tuesday, March 17th want you to be there!