This week we asked girls from our group at Mercer Middle School to tell us how Powerful Voices has helped them grow. "I feel more confident," one student said. Another student shared, "...sometimes I would force myself to have a boyfriend just to not be single. But after this group I don't do that. I'm not going to find a boy to not feel single. I'm going to find someone I like."
How is Powerful Voices so successful at helping girls gain confidence, build healthy relationships and increase skills that help them in school and life? It's all about our commitment to providing high quality programming. That means we provide a safe and supportive space where girls build relationships with each other and take on meaningful leadership roles in group. Research has found that participation in youth development programs can positively influence social, emotional, and academic outcomes for youth but only when the quality of the program is high.
In 2009, Powerful Voices was selected as a grantee of the Raikes Foundation and participated in King County's first cohort of the Youth Program Quality Initiative. Our involvement in the initiative formally ended in 2011, but our commitment to quality continues. Each year our programs undergo an external assessment of our program quality. This year, we are proud to report that our scores in all four quality domains exceed the national average of data from 1,263 other programs.