Time to Girl-Up

TOWAMENCIN — Thousands of miles away, from the local villages of Guatemala to the coasts of Asian nations, North Penn’s very own Girl Up Club is making a difference. The thirty members of this organization work tirelessly towards making positive and progressive changes. 

Co-Presidents Catherine Cavanaugh and Molly Casper, along with their cabinet, Cassie Calvaresi and Megan Albert (Vice Presidents), Samuella Aduboahen (Secretary), and Courtney Adams (Treasurer), all work together in order to create fun and educational activities and discussions throughout the year. 

“Girl Up as a whole is a UN organization. They provide a lot of resources for women in education, STEM, and sports, as well as victims of sexual violence and women from less developed countries,” Casper shared. “There are clubs all across the world. These clubs do fundraising to assist the causes they support, as well as spread awareness to these issues.”

The fundraising efforts include not only the members of Girl Up but additionally the help and support of the community and beyond. Over the years, North Penn’s Girl Up club has sold products ranging from chocolate bars to scrunchies, and all of the proceeds go back to help the businesses back in the developing countries. They create a strong global impact which is incredibly beneficial to many international minorities. 

“Scrunchies and other products were made from women in Latin and South America, as well as from some Asian countries,” Cavanaugh explained. “We then market them and the money goes back to help support their businesses or receive more education in order to assist their finances regarding their own business.”

This year, Girl Up has focused on getting its members involved in group discussions. So far, they’ve welcomed women from different careers into their meetings in order to share their experiences in their field. 

“This year, we’ve been doing a lot of discussions. This works best because it gets everyone involved. So far, we’ve had ones with women in politics, women in sports, and women in STEM,” Casper stated. “We also joined a Pennsylvania Girl Up Coalition, which is a bunch of Girl Up clubs across the state. We are planning a Unite the Coalition event on March 20th from 10-2. It’s a great event that’ll have various workshops, guest speakers, and trivia all for free.” 

The members of Girl Up constantly make a collaborative effort to make the space welcoming, inclusive, and informative. With a variety of different discussions and activities, the club is a strong asset to our North Penn community and beyond.

“My first time going to a Girl Up meeting was sophomore year, and the meeting that really stood out to me was making bracelets for Breast Cancer Awareness,” Aduboahen stated. “Being new to the district at the time, it was great having a club where everyone was being nice and interacting while working on this project. That’s how I knew this club was different from the other clubs, it was just such a peaceful environment.”

For young women and other minority groups, Girl Up offers a chance to create meaningful change beyond the community. The members hope that the lessons they learned from their experience in the club will not only help them move forward but can help younger generations. 

“Find a group of people who align with your values. You need to join together with people who will support you. It helps with making friends and connections moving forward,” Albert stated.

Girl Up consists of a group of people who have a common interest in equitable treatment and exploring the avenues on which we can progress. It’s not to tear down another group, it’s to work for goals and fix the problems we are facing.”

— Catherine Cavanaugh - Girl Up Co-President

Aduboahen added, “Try to find people with ambition. Finding people who have dreams and goals but also motivate you to achieve your dream.” 

North Penn’s very own Girl Up is always striving towards creating a better future for all groups of people, regardless of race, gender, and background. 

“Girl Up consists of a group of people who have a common interest in equitable treatment and exploring the avenues on which we can progress. It’s not to tear down another group, it’s to work for goals and fix the problems we are facing,” Cavanaugh concluded. 

For anyone interested in the Unite the Coalition event on March 20th from 10 a.m-2 p.m., please use Girl Up’s Google Classroom code, wnnq5es, for more information.