I heard of Step Up years ago when I first started event planning in Los Angeles. You see, they have this fancy pant charity event every year filled with powerful, high profile women, and I was dying to plan that event. But, as things often do, the event eluded me, but my interest in the organization never really left. Fast forward about five years and the organization contacted me letting me know several of the girls in the organization had an interest in pursuing event planning as a career, and would I consider mentoring. When these opportunities come, I’m always a little bit nervous worried that I don’t really have much to share, but then I remember, I am one of these girls. If nothing else, I can show them what a woman can do even if she comes from a low-income family and underserved area. So, I said, of course and off I went to spend my Saturday with girls from the inner city.
8am comes on the Saturday of my mentorship and I arrive to a room filled with beautiful women ready to prepare for their future. The thing to remember about Step Up Women’s Network, is these girls self elect to be there. That means, that no matter what their lives look like or whether or not they have someone pushing them at home, they have made a conscious decision to get up once a month starting in their freshman year through graduation, and learn skills that will help prepare them for college and their future careers.
This particular Saturday was spent on interviewing, resumes, online presence and more. Or in other words, how to present your skill set in a way that someone would want to take a chance on you whether in college or in the job market. We talked through the do’s and don’ts of social media. How to answer all the hard questions and what to include on their resumes. As we worked with the girls, one thing stood out as even more important than saying the right words or posting the right image on Instagram, and that was confidence. As we talked through resumes, the girls beamed to learn that they actually had so much more to offer than they originally thought. Whether they were bilingual or they had been managing a church fundraiser for the past four years, they were surprised that at the core of each of them, was already a fundamental value system that would drive them to success if they just learned to own it and communicate it appropriately. As a girl and even a women who sometimes struggles with these confidence issues myself, it was beautiful to look at a room full of girls who think they are just a normal teenager and realizing that just by the fact that they arrived that morning, they were already a step ahead of so many other people they would be competing with in the job market.
I loved this experience so much and cannot wait to get involved again. It was an amazing reminder that education, preparation skills and good ole fashioned support can make a life changing impact on every person. Step Up is truly teaching women things that no one will ever be able to take from them, and that may be the reason I love this organization the most.
In addition to mentorship programs, Step Up offers after school programming, college preparation opportunities and more. If you want to learn more about Step Up or support them with your wedding registry, you can do so by clicking here. And, as always, if you have an organization you have a personal experience with that would be perfect for a wedding registry, please share it here or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.