In the past, Black History Month has existed to remind us of the greatness we didn’t know we possessed. But in 2018, we believe Black History Month has an altered purpose. In addition to showing the persistence of black Americans, it provides an opportunity for white parents to educate their children not only about the contributions made by black Americans, but also to give them an insight to the circumstances that led to its creation.
Being a business owner, a fitness trainer, a daughter, a girlfriend, a friend and all the above, it is so easy to derail from a day-to-day routine. By the end of 2017, I had a lot of change in my life and found myself taking on too much. I felt confused, lost and scattered. I am grateful for the opportunities but realistically, I could not sustain that lifestyle.
My name is Neya Krishnan. I’m 14 years old and proud to share that my parents are Indian immigrants. This country was built by dreamers like my parents. While I was born and reared in the US, I have visited family in India many times growing up. These visits have helped me appreciate the rights I have in the US. And also reflect on some of the continued challenges to women’s rights. I have been fortunate in that my parents have given me nothing but opportunities to grow as a person and the confidence to succeed. They’ve allowed me to dream the wildest of dreams, and never once doubted my ability to fulfill them. But most of all they have never made me feel incapable because I’m a girl.
I am sure that all of you have heard of Oprah Winfrey. You might know that her show, “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, was the highest rated television show of its kind or that she is the richest African-American in the world, but what you might not realize is that she wasn’t always so fortunate. In fact, Oprah endured a difficult childhood. Oprah suffered the impact of her parent’s divorce from an early age, was sexually abused, and went as far as to seriously consider taking her own life. Oprah overcame these obstacles to achieve greatness. This past week, she became the first African American woman to be awarded the Cecil B. de Mille lifetime achievement award. For anyone who might have missed it, Oprah delivered an awe-inspiring, girl-power-filled acceptance speech at the Golden Globe Awards. Here are a few key messages that resonated with me.
“What I know for sure is that speaking your truth is the most powerful tool we all have. And I’m especially proud, and inspired by all the women who have felt strong enough and empowered enough to speak up and share their personal stories.” We are fortunate to live in a world where women are empowered to speak out. Women’s voices are being heard all over the world and yours is no exception!
It’s Time for a Change!
“For too long women have not been heard or believed [when speaking their truth], but that time is up. The time is up!” In 2017, countless influential women joined the ‘Me Too’ movement, empowering others to speak up. This is one of many steps that women made this past year and I cannot wait to see what women will accomplish in 2018. The time for change is now!
There is Hope!
“[We need to] maintain hope for a brighter morning, even during our darkest nights. I want all the girls watching here and now [to know] that a new day is on the horizon.” You are those girls! And I truly believe that there is no better time to be a girl than now. As Oprah said, a new day is on the horizon. So, let’s all come together and be a part of the change.
We Need Leaders!
“And when that new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say ‘Me too’ again.” One of my favorite parts of LiveGirl is the leadership training. Each and every one of you is equipped with the skills to be the leaders of tomorrow and there is no reason that you can’t be a part of this change. Just look at how far Oprah has come.
Plenty of us like to hide from our commitments. They’re not fun after all. No one likes to think about that test that’s due next week or that doctor’s appointment we have to go to on Wednesday. But here’s the thing: if you don’t know, you can’t plan. And there’s not much worse than having a test sneak up on you without you having done any studying or finding out you have to go to the doctor when you were hoping to see your friends that afternoon.
The beginning of every year is the perfect time to reflect on your past year and set goals for the future. In the past, I’ve used my winter break as a way to take some much needed time away from the stressful burdens of school in order to evaluate how I’ve been doing not just academically but, socially and mentally as well. Setting goals can be a great way to ensure you stay focused throughout the year on what you want to get done.
Growing up in a small town in New England, I knew something wasn’t right. At sixteen, everything felt so complicated; the pressure in my head would build until an inevitable breakdown. On the outside, I was social, active, and carefree; but inside, this wasn’t the case. I struggled in school despite having the capacity to excel. I had chronic depression but didn’t have the tools to recognize it yet.
Be honest, have you ever chosen not to raise your hand in class because you were afraid others might not listen to your ideas? Or maybe you didn’t try out for the lead role in your school play because you were afraid you might not be good enough? Perhaps you didn’t like the way a friend was treating you, but you were afraid to speak up?
Across the world, the United States is known as the land of opportunity and equality and we pride ourselves on the rights we guarantee to all American citizens. However, when you look under the surface, there is a gap that reveals inequality. Although women in the United States are granted more rights than women in other countries, they do not have the same rights that men are guaranteed. One of the major points of inequality is pay disparity between men and women in the workforce. Even though America is known as a country of equality, there is still a wage gap that reveals the inequality between men and women.
I love the quote by Eleanor Roosevelt, "You wouldn’t worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do."
I try to live by this mantra, but it can often be hard to believe and even harder to actually live out. Ridden with bullies, judgment, and popularity contests, the middle school environment seems to be one of the easiest places for girls to lose sight of their true selves. But why? What is so great about having everyone the exact same outfit, the exact same shoes, and the exact same hair that every single middle school girl makes it their goal?
Meet Emily Fields, the inspirational 14 year-old from Wilton, Connecticut who has won not one, not two, but three Gold Medals at the National TaeKwonDo Championships and is a second degree black belt! We caught up with Emily at her home in Wilton to learn more about her passion and find out what it takes to become a true champion.
It sometimes seems that sadness and devastation are occurring everyday around the world. Whether it’s a hurricane that leaves millions without food or the war in Syria, there is always a piece of news that shows the desolate situations humanity is in. When I see these news stories, I often feel helpless that there isn’t anything I can do. After all, I don’t live anywhere close to where the hurricanes are hitting so, how could I possibly be of any help?
By Jillian Desiderio | STRONG Magazine
A question a lot of middle school girls ask themselves is “Where do I fit in?” It can be confusing as friendships start to change and you are no longer sure where you belong when it comes to “social groups.” Think about it - when you were younger, you were probably told things like “you can’t say you can’t play,” and “we are all friends in this class.”
Although that idea is nice in theory, the reality is that we are not all friends and that is okay. You don’t have to be friends in general or best friends with everybody, that’s for sure. That being said, it is not okay when we are mean or unkind to others.