The work of the Coalition for Equal Access for Girls has had a determined and dedicated staff. Since 1993, the organization has focused on ensuring Oregon Girls have access to critical services. They have brought awarenss to professionals and the general public about the needs of girls. Go Girls!
This organization has made an important and crucial impact for girls in Oregon. The coalition has potential to improve programs and support those who work directly with girls.
I have been a coalition board member for many years and continue to support the organization because of the tremendous impact it has on the lives of girls and young women in Oregon's child welfare and juvenile justice systems. The coalition has been instrumental in protecting state funding for the programs most critical to young women and in educating those who serve girls in the benefits of gender appropriate programming.
I was asked by the director of my agency to be the champion for young women in the juvenile justice system. I was introduced to the Coalition of Equal Access for Girls and became a member of the Coalition's board and with the charge of this organization and its mission, made great strides towards ensuring equal access for girls in the juvenile justice system and creating a solid gender responsive continuum of care. The Coalition has a strong voice in the legisature and was key to creating equal access laws that guide current practice. Young women in the juvenile justice and child welfare system are better off today because of the passionate and tireless work of this non-profit!
I've worked with this group for several years now - my involvement in the group's activities has grown as my interest has deepened. It's a unique group with a special mission that speaks to me as someone who works with a population that is underserved. But I also just enjoy the company of the others in the Coalition.
The Coalition of Advocates for Equal Access for Girls is a powerful organization. Since 1993, it has championed the rights of girls throughout the state of Oregon. It is now poised to assist other states throughout the nation in developing legislation that will ensure that young women have equal access to services within their states.
I worked with the Coalition from February 2003-January 2005 as the Executive Administrative Assistant. Through my years with the Coalition, I helped to plan and organize annual and regional meetings; researched and wrote articles for the quarterly Girls’ Advocate newsletter; helped to develop a Girls' Advocacy curriculum; and participated in the daily workings of the organization. I remember, on numerous occasions, being quite taken by the knowledge, energetic resources, dedication, and passion that the Coalition's members extend in support of the organizational mission. In working to ensure equal access to gender-specific support and services, and give a voice to girls' issues, these volunteers are making lasting change in the lives of young women throughout the state.
I became introduced to the Coalition during my senior year of high school when I began my senoir project to reduce abuse in foster care homes. As a foster youth, I was determined to insure that this did not happen to other kids in care. The President of the Coalition became my key advisor for the project and connected me to the people I needed to know to change policies at the state level. With the Coalition's support, I presented my project to the Oregon Child Welfare Advisory Committee and then helped them rewrite policies around face to face contact between caseworkers and the youth on their caseloads. After college I returned to the Coalition as a Board Member and continue my advocacy work today to make foster care better in Oregon. The Coalition's support opened many doors for me as a young woman and I am honored to continue to be involved in thier advocacy on behalf of girls.
The Coalition has made a tremendous difference in Oregon ensuring that girls and young women receive the gender responsive services they need. After passage of legislation requiring all state agencies to provide gender specific services this all volunteer organization continues to be a watch dog working to guarantee that the law is implemented effectively. Oregon is the only state with such a law making the coalition and our state a pioneer. The Coalition is a tireless, dedicated and passionate advocate for the needs and potential of girls and young women in Oregon and across the country.