I came to Sadie Nash as a dean in the summer of 2008 and I can without a doubt say that my experience there with those girls changed my life and like most volunteer work I got out of it much more than I put in. My experience there lead me to join the Peace Corps and find other ways to help people. Currently serving in the Peace Corps I am hosting a Girls Empowerment Camp in the middle of August...it is because of my work at Sadie Nash that I got selected to be a host.
SNLP was probably one of the most formative experiences of my post-graduate life. As a Duke graduate with a degree in Women's Studies and Sociology and a passion for social change, finding this organization was truly a blessing! As a Dean I was responsible for the close supervision and mentoring of a small group of young women, supporting their growth directly during short sessions three days a week and indirectly throughout their time in the program. Additionally, I acted as a co-teacher for one of the core programmatic courses: Power, Identity and Privilege. I supported my faculty member in creating and executing innovative and engaging curriculum that challenged our students to critically examine inequalities that exist, and understand how we can be allies and/or speak from our experiences of oppression o fight for a better world. I learned as much as the participants that summer. Every young woman should have the opportunity to participate in a program like this one!
Sadie Nash Leadership Project has been a big part in opening me up to the world. They were unbias toward our merit, race, and sexual orientation. In fact, in the two summers I've spent in the Sadie Nash Leadership Project, I've met the most diverse group of young women. The workshops the project provides includes workshops that promote finding our inner-self/self esteem, ranging from DJing classes to Art. We also meet with phenomenal speakers every single week.
Not only does Sadie Nash have a famous summer program, but they also have classes that are held sporadically/routinely in the weekends for other general women's empowerment purposes.
Sadie Nash Leadership Project was one of the most incredible experiences I could have had in my life. The summer I spent with the Nashers as a Dean in the 2010 Summer Institute was one of the most powerful and inspirational opportunities I could have been given. Sadie Nash works to empower women, but in truly unconventional ways. Teaching young women that they are experts on their lives was one of the most incredible lessons I could have taken away from the Summer Institute. In retrospect, objectively thinking of the impact Sadie Nash has on young women is something to be proud of. This organization inspires women to make choices, be knowledgeable about the world, and advocate for justice for all people. Nothing I have experienced has ever had this type of impact on my social awareness of how to liberate people in my own community. Praise to Sadie Nash for being an incredible organization, with hard working women, and even greater results.
I LOVE Sadie Nash Leadership Project (SNLP). I have had the opportunity to teach young women in their Brooklyn and Newark Summer Institutes and have been impressed by the consistency of their mission in all aspects of their work. They believe that young women are leaders and this belief pervades all of their activities. The Summer Institutes offer AMAZING coursework - like Theater of the Oppressed and the Poetry of Women Prisoners. Over a six-week period, I have borne witness to the transformation of young women - specifically, in terms of how they connect with social justice work and how they view themselves.
In addition, I love that SNLP is hyper-organized. I sometimes have experienced youth organizations be a little sloppy in their bookkeeping or administration. I find that SNLP is always on top of it which makes them a pleasure to work with.
I attended the Sadie Nash Leadership project in the summer of 2010 and honestly it was the best summer of my life. I learned about leadership and about issues such as immigration laws, women's oppression, LGBTQ struggles, and unethical behavior in certain industries. I would say that I am a new person because of my experience. For example, before Sadie Nash I was not aware of the struggles of people from the LGBTQ community and now I can say that I am an ally. The community was very welcoming and accepting. The atmosphere was laid-back and supportive, a place where everyone could be her true self. I also learned life lessons that I live by today. For example, I learned that all of our struggles are connected and in order to change one form of oppression we must change all forms of oppression.