My Perspective on “At Risk”

Hi All!

One of the things that I have been reflecting on recently is that I feel as though I spend a lot of time talking about how amazing the girls in the clubs are, which is 100% true. I also discuss the ways in which GSGC and The Seraphine Project are trying to help them reach their full potential. One of the aspects that we concentrate on less is the reasoning behind helping these girls. To me, it is because the girls live very difficult, “at-risk” lives. I’m not sure how often we really pause to think about what “at risk” truly means, although it is one of the most important reasons that I feel so deeply connected to supporting the GSGC girls.

A group of girls attentively listening to the conversation at “Believe” club in Livingston, Zambia

A group of girls attentively listening to the conversation at “Believe” club in Livingston, Zambia

Personally, I view “at risk” as as having two main components that ultimately funnel together, creating one ultimate concern. The first aspect is the challenges and threats that girls face in their daily lives. To begin, many of the girls come from extremely broken households, meaning that they likely have only one or no parent around and they find themselves having to fend for themselves or even raise their siblings. Another challenge that they face is that their families may not have enough money to purchase essential items. Feminine hygiene products, school fees, or a school uniform are just a few examples. Additionally, the girls and their families may not have enough financial capacity to have a substantial meal on the table.

Along with the examples I mentioned, some girls are subject to both physical and sexual abuse, not to mention many girls become pregnant as teens. This unfortunate reality causes so many adolescent girls to drop out of high school and in many cases begin raising children as teenagers. Teen pregnancy means that the girls are no longer able to finish their education nor pursue a career. Sadly, this is the phenomenon that so many face in their broken communities.

The second aspect of “at risk” are the challenges that girls face from their society. The biggest part of this is that girls and women are not valued within their communities. If a family has both a son and daughter, the family is historically more likely to invest in their son’s future. Many families sadly do not believe their daughter will be successful in life.

“Rise and Shine,” a club in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

“Rise and Shine,” a club in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Ultimately, each and every girl living in these communities is at risk of not having the chance to reach their full potential. Without support, encouragement, and mentorship like the clubs provide it is close to impossible for these teens to thrive. More often than not, something like becoming pregnant will act as a road block, and the girls will not be able to succeed past high school and into their careers.

I ask that you all reflect on how we live our daily lives, the opportunities we have, and the resources we are given to succeed in life. Think about how much energy is put toward trying to help each of us reach our full potential. GSGC and The Seraphine Project’s main goal is to make that reality possible for every single girl we reach!

xoxo,

Emily

P.S.- The pen-pal program is currently running very smoothly. We have an incredible amount of enthusiasm and many more girls are wanting to become pen-pals which is so incredible. Thank you for your support! But before we can push another big expansion and match up even more girls here and in Africa, we are hoping to fine tune some logistical aspects of the program in the next month. Stay tuned and thank you all for your patience!

Safe Space Update!

Hello Everyone!

Today I come to each of you with very exciting news! As most of y’all know, last year I was fundraising for a safe space to assist the needs of the clubs, girls, and aunties. Typically the clubs meet in a school, a local village, or one of the auntie’s homes. However this poses a very difficult issue around privacy and confidentiality. Many of the girls feel as though other outside people may be listening to their conversations. Some of this may be unavoidable, but the safe space will allow the girls to always feel like they have a safe place to come, hence the name!

Thanks to each and every one of you we have been able to turn a dream into a reality, for which I cannot thank you enough! Just a couple months ago we obtained a space in Victoria Falls which is coincidentally next door to Smokey’s home. Over just a short amount of time plans have been made and renovation has begun on the space. It is not yet up and running, but if all stays on track it will open in the next month or two!

I have included some photos below to help you gain a better idea of what the space looks like. Please also stay tuned for more photos to come so that you can see the progress that is being made! Over time the girls and aunties will also play a big role in how the space evolves through their own designs. This is part of the whole process.

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for all of the endless support! I cannot express enough to every one of you how much it truly means to me. I promise each and every dollar helps to change lives!!

tons of x’s and o’s,

Emily

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the front

Huge progress has already been made on cleaning up the front of the space. Eventually, the front will be more clean and polished and include a security fence and gate.

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first interior room

When you first walk in the door, this is the view you see. This area will be dedicated to a space for visitors. Through the door across the room will be Smokey’s office.

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bathroom for girls

This is one of the first pieces of the space that is almost complete! Having a nice restroom for the girls is very important. This one is nicer than in many local homes and a big deal because not all girls even have access to running water, let alone a private shower!

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the back

This photo is of the back of the space - although you can’t see the full yard. There will be a shade-covered area and outdoor furniture where the girls will be able to spend lots of time! The back has not yet been cleaned since construction is still happening, but stay tuned for more progress here!

Sometimes Small is BIG

Welcome back, Everyone!

In the time that I have been back from my most recent visit to Africa, I have been reflecting and I’ve come to the realization that it is really “the little things” that make a tremendous impact. I think that I often focus on the bigger picture - both in life and when I speak about The Seraphine Project. Yet, there are things that may seem little but potentially have a much bigger impact and create a sense of possibility for the girls in regard to their life as it is currently and their future. During my visit in March, there were several activities that I did with the girls that initially may have been thought of as “little,” but in truth, they are part of making a larger impact.  

The first example of something that may seem small is activities that the aunties and girls do when they meet. Some that I got to see include poetry readings, song performances, and even acting exercises. Yet you, like me, may wonder, “what difference would these activities make?” What I have come to realize is that all of these help to significantly improve the girls public speaking skills and self-confidence.

The girls are holding up the hearts the revived from their friends!

The girls are holding up the hearts the revived from their friends!

Another small activity that I did with the Rise and Shine club was to have the girls write positive messages on hearts and share them with each other. The inspiration for this exercise comes from my mom when on Valentines Day she wrote affirmations on many cutout hearts and put them all over my mirror. At the club meeting some of the messages that they wrote were “you look so pretty today,” or “I like your smile.” In the end, each of the girls ended up with six or more hearts to bring home as a reminder of how amazing they are.

Here are some younger girls that are also very excited about the messages they received!

Here are some younger girls that are also very excited about the messages they received!

Within many of the communities where the girls reside there are not many positive messages for girls and women because sadly, they are not valued highly. Several girls even approached me at the end of the meeting and asked if they could have extra hearts to give to their friends who aren't in the club or couldn't be there that day! This very accurately represents how something as little as a message on a cutout heart can make all the difference in a girls self-image and confidence.

Making brownies was a totally new experience for all of the girls!

Making brownies was a totally new experience for all of the girls!

A third example of something seeming little we did was baking brownies as a group activity to have some fun. Believe it or not, this was actually a much bigger deal than I realized! I personally find (and I am assuming many can relate) that I take something as simple as having dessert for granted. To have a little something extra for enjoyment is huge. It's not just a special treat, it also teaches the girls that they are special. For many girls, baking is a new experience. Having a house with an oven is a huge luxury and most had never baked before. Just as we like to treat ourselves every once in a while, they do too. Providing the opportunity to do so is very valuable!

Finally, on two nights when I was visiting we were fortunate to take a few girls to dinner. This was definitely one of my biggest highlights of the trip as I absolutely love deepening my relationships with them and having 1- on - 1 conversations. Sharing dinner may seem inconsequential to most of us, but for the girls to be exposed to ordering off a menu and being treated as valued guests is a really special opportunity. Building unique relationships is a great way for both of us to create new connections and learn more about each other's lives. Knowing that they are worthy of being at a restaurant and striving to have that experience again in the future is also powerful!

All of these small activities have tremendous value on so many levels. Whether it is building confidence, deepening relationships, or expanding horizons, it’s the little things in life that truly matter the most!

xoxo.

Emily

Gals Writing to Their Pals!

Hi All!

It is so hard to believe how quickly this month has flown by! As y’all read a couple of months ago, I announced that I would be starting a pen-pal program with girls here in the United States and girls who are part of the clubs in Africa. Today I am going to dive into the program and share how some people have felt when receiving the letters.

I want to first emphasize the excitement. Everyone who I have heard from so far have been over the moon excited about getting a letter.  As for the girls in Africa, I delivered the initial letters during my visit in March. Within just three days, 15 of the 25 club girls had already written back. Not only did they write, but many of them walked more than 40 minutes to hand deliver their replies to Auntie Procedure, so I could carry the notes back on the plane to the US. The girls were so excited!

The girls enthusiastically reading their letters!

The girls enthusiastically reading their letters!

Many of my friends here, both in Park City and around the country, were also thrilled to receive their first letters. I talked to some of them about what it meant and how they feel about having a pen-pal.

Taylor Graves, who lives in Atlanta, GA,  has “always wanted to have a pen pal or connection to Africa.” When I talked to her, I asked about how it felt to receive her letter from someone in Africa. She shared “It is so exciting to know that I have a connection with another teenager so far away and that someone knows my name across the world.” Taylor went on to express, “I want to gain a different understanding outside of the stereotype we have today. It is amazing to me that she and I, two people from completely different worlds, can become such close friends by writing letters to each other.” Taylor has such a huge heart for others and I know that this relationship will go so far. While I was in Victoria Falls, I was actually lucky enough to introduce Taylor to her pen-pal Mariah. They clicked instantly and are a perfect match!

Another friend from Atlanta, Ashley Davidson, also had a very interesting perspective. Both of her parents are from Ghana (which is in western Africa) and her grandmother currently resides there. Although Ashley has a connection with Africa unlike others, she had not experienced something like having a pen-pal before. When writing her initial letter, she felt “It was delightful to connect with my roots not only through writing but also through a new perspective.” Ashley has not yet received a letter back but she explained to me that she is “eager to hear from a new friend all the way across the globe.” She can’t wait to see how her relationship develops with her pen-pal!

One of the girls loving the letter she received!

One of the girls loving the letter she received!

Additionally, a friend from Park City, Emma Schwartz, has gotten involved. Emma actually has a project of her own designing clothes - you should check it out! (https://thehuckproject.com/). She has actually traveled to Africa twice on Safari with her family and would “love to spend time with the girls and meet her pen-pal in person.” I asked Emma to tell me about her perspective on Africa after traveling there. Emma responded enthusiastically, “Africa was the most amazing place I have ever been to and I was so lucky to get to travel there in the span of just a year and a half. The people, environment and everything about it is magical. It will forever be my favorite place on this planet. I have only seen one side of the African experience - the luxury and animal sightings. But, the few moments outside of the game reserves and near the airports was mind opening. I would love, and hope, to get the chance to see the other side of the African experience.” Additionally, I asked Emma to share what excited her the most about having a pen-pal. Emma replied “Having a pen pal is something I’ve always thought about so I’m very glad this opportunity came about. I know it’ll take time but I really do believe that it is one of the more delicate and vulnerable forms of friendship. I can’t wait to keep exchanging letters and see the progression of both of us throughout the years. I can already tell that after one letter this is going to be something I’ll remember forever, and I hope my new friend agrees!”

Every girl is waving their letter in the air with excitement!!

Every girl is waving their letter in the air with excitement!!

Finally, I asked another dear friend from Atlanta, Julia Jamieson, for some of her thoughts and perspective. Julia was thrilled to get a letter back from her pen-pal and she immediately took a photo of the letter and she shared it via text with many friends. They were all amazed by the work being done and thought it was so inspiring. Seven of her friends instantly texted me asking for a pen-pal. It is so exciting to see how interested they were and that they so eagerly wanted to be involved. Just as Julia was so amazing to spread the word, you can too!! Please feel free to reach out if you are interested in being a pen-pal or if you know someone who might be! Julia also expressed, “I want to learn more about the girls and make a new friend. It is honestly so cool to have a relationship on a different continent and know that even if I have never met them, I feel a deep connection as if I have known them forever.”

As you can tell, everyone is so enthusiastic about their new relationships. I cannot wait to see where this goes so stay tuned! Speaking of staying tuned, there will be a Giving Circle donor conference call this Saturday, May 4th at 9 am PST / noon EST - dial 605-468-8005 and enter the code: 603003#. You should TUNE IN and learn more about all of the amazing work being done! I will have some pen-pals on the call sharing more about their reactions.

As always, never hesitate to reach out. Happy Spring!!

Love,

Emily

My Recent Trip to Africa!

Hello Everyone!

As many of you may recall, just a few weeks ago I was fortunate to take a trip to Africa to spend more time with the girls, deepen relationships, meet some new aunties, and even spend time seeing new clubs. Needless to say, the trip was absolutely incredible inside and out! In this months blog post I am going to tell ya’ll all about my trip and share some new photos, too! Let's dive right in.

First Day With the Girls

This is one of the girls, Pamela, after she received her pen-pal letter

This is one of the girls, Pamela, after she received her pen-pal letter

After 48 hours of travel and a very special 36 hours of safari with my dad, I finally got off of a small 10 seater plane at Victoria Falls Airport and stepped into the almost 100 degree heat. We met Smokey (the program leader for GSGC who is “on the ground” in VF) and Priscilla (the GSGC founder and inspiration for the clubs) at our hotel. That afternoon, Priscilla and I went to the “Girls Time” club meeting. After arriving at the school where the club meets, I was greeted with several hugs and welcoming smiles by all of the girls - especially from friends I originally met in 2017. In this club meeting, I passed out 25 pen-pal letters from girls here in the United States. All of the Girls Time club girls were thrilled to receive them and could not wait to see what their new pen-pals had to say. Some of the girls were so excited that they actually wrote letters back and hand delivered them to me the next day! Priscilla asked the girls to raise their hands if they had ever given a letter to someone. 1 of 30 girls raised her hand. Then she asked who had ever received a letter. No hands went up. It was so exciting to see how happy they all were to have gotten their first letter! And I’m even more excited to think about these new pen-pal relationships hopefully turning into long term friendships.

Visiting Livingstone, Zambia For the First Time

Today we went to Livingstone, Zambia which is only about a 20-minute drive over a bridge just below the actual Victoria Falls. After going across the border and getting passports stamped, we met 2 very special aunties, Gloria and Rachel, whom I had never met before. They took us to a nearby market to get a feel for local culture and we also drove through some very poor neighborhoods that were extremely eye-opening to see. At one point we went to a rock quarry where mothers and grandmothers work all day breaking big stones into piles of pebbles - just hoping someone may come along and maybe pay them $1 for a full days of work. Life is very hard for many women in this part of the world even though most of us would probably imagine that anything near Victoria Falls is a paradise. Not the case at all!

After that we met another amazing auntie named Agnes. She and her husband are both talented artists and her club is actually in a very cool art studio at their home. It was very interesting to see how she uses art to inspire and empower her girls. Next, we went to visit a club that has its own space inside a school. These club girls go to a school that is very difficult to get into and they all seemed quite educated. In the club meeting that day, they discussed what the club and aunties mean to them, as well as some of the situations they live with on a daily basis. Not all are as poor as the girls in other clubs, but all face difficult situations because girls are not valued and supported the same as boys in their society.

That evening, back in Vic Falls, we shared dinner with four girls from the “Girls Time” club at a nicer restaurant on the banks of the Zambezi river. It was great spending more individualized time developing relationships plus most of them had never had this type of experience. That is actually part of empowering the girls - showing them that they belong anywhere. It is also special to see how these particular girls have grown in confidence and become so focused on a brighter future in just over a year and a half since our last visit! After a long, but unbelievable day, my dad and I headed back to get a full sleep. Days with the aunties and girls are so fulfilling but also physically and emotionally exhausting!

A Day in the Rural Village

This is an activity we did with the girls in the rural village!

This is an activity we did with the girls in the rural village!

Today we headed out to see girls in a rural village. Last year we spent time with auntie Sfe and met some of her girls at a different location. Rural girls tend to be more shy and their English language skills are less developed. I brought along an activity for us to do together as a way to bond and also do something fun and empowering. I’m going to share more about what we did in a future blog post! Some of the girls also recited poetry and others did free-form drawings. It may not seem like a big deal to us, but standing in front of a group and performing is a really big confidence booster. You can literally see the girls standing taller and looking stronger. After the club meeting, I even got to try my hand at pumping water from the community well!

This photo is from dinner with the girls at Smokey’s house!

This photo is from dinner with the girls at Smokey’s house!

That evening we were fortunate to share another small group meal in the backyard at Smokey and his wonderful wife Yolanda’s house. Yolanda cooked a traditional meal of beef stew, kale and soudza (like polenta) that we all ate with our fingers. Also, as a new experience and special treat for the girls, I taught them how to make brownies from a mix I brought from the US. They had never baked before or tasted brownies so it was super cool to show them something that I loved to do. Dinner was delicious and the night ended with an impromptu dance party listening to some music I enjoy! Sadly, I learned after the girls left to go home that one of the them (who looked as happy and healthy as the others) hadn’t eaten meat in a very long time because her father spends all his money on a girlfriend rather than feeding his daughter. This is just one of the many examples of challenges these girls face in their lives.

So Hard to Leave

Before saying our goodbyes, we got a very special treat when we visited the first ever GSGC safe space that has just been obtained. It still needs a lot of work which will happen over the coming months. But thanks to the incredible generosity of Seraphine Project supporters who donated all the funds, this dream is finally coming together. I could not be more excited for what is ahead with the space and can’t wait for the girls and aunties to have a private space all to themselves!! After that last highlight, sadly my dad and I had to leave. Our hearts were so full from the experience and we had the best father-daughter trip together. Still there is so much work to be done and girls to support and empower. I already can’t wait to go back!!

As many of you all know, last year I was mostly fundraising for a safe space. This year I have decided that my efforts are going to go toward funding the clubs including expanding their resources and even helping alumni. After being with the girls and developing more relationships, I feel a stronger connection than ever to the work that is being done with the clubs. I would like to ask you all to consider donating to support these incredible girls. They deserve so much and the clubs provide them with such incredible opportunities unlike anything else. By donating, you are giving the girls the opportunity to grow into amazing women who can realize their full potential. I cannot express my gratitude enough for all of the support from each of you!!  

Another way you can help is to please also follow me on social media and invite others to do the same. I will be sharing even more in the future via blogs and @theseraphineproject on Instagram.

Love,

Emily

Here is a video of the girls when they received their pen-pal letters!

I Will Always Write Back

Hi Everyone!!

It is hard to believe that 2019 is flying by and it’s already the end of February! I have several very important updates to share about The Seraphine Project today. Let's jump right in!

To begin, I am very excited to tell you all that I am starting a pen pal program between some of my friends here in the US and some of the Club girls in Zimbabwe. This new initiative is inspired from an amazing book “I Will Always Write Back.” The book is about a teenage girl in America and a boy living in Zimbabwe. It highlights their pen pal relationship and how one letter ultimately changed both of their lives forever. Here’s a bit about their story:

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One day a girl, Catlin, was given an assignment at school to write to a boy her age living in Zimbabwe. Her first letter led to many more between them as they developed an incredibly deep relationship. Throughout the book, you learn about both of their lives. In particular, you are given a really incredible perspective into what life is like in Zimbabwe for Martin. The two write back and forth from September 1997 until 2003 when a truly remarkable milestone occurs for both of them. I don’t want to give much else away, but I would highly recommend that anyone read this incredible story. I promise you will come away inspired and also understand more about some of the circumstances girls in Victoria Falls, Livingstone and surrounding rural communities face every day.

For a while now I have been wanting to get girls here directly involved with the remarkable club girls I have been fortunate enough to work with. 25 fantastic and caring friends here in the States have volunteered to be matched with a girl from the “Girls Time” club in Victoria Falls. They are each writing a letter that will be delivered very soon (more on that in a minute). I honestly don’t know what the reaction will be, but for me, anytime I receive a piece of mail I get super excited. And to give some perspective, most of these girls in Zimbabwe have never once received a piece of mail in their entire lives. I hope that they will all be so excited to hear from their new friends that they will quickly write back! In this way the return letters will give a gift of friendship and inspiration to my American friends. And who knows how long some of these new relationships may last? I certainly hope a very long time just like in “I Will Always Write Back”!

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The second thing that I am overjoyed to announce is that in less than two weeks my dad and I will be returning to Africa to spend time with several clubs in Zimbabwe and Zambia! While there, I will get to visit with some of the girls I developed relationships with when I first visited in November 2017. I will also see some new clubs, meet new girls, as well as spend some time with Aunties and also alumni girls, too! Stay posted for many photos and an update after the trip! I can't wait to tell you all about it!!

The last thing that I am so proud to announce today is that The Seraphine Project has met our goal and raised enough funds to fully support a the creation of a first-ever safe space!! Thank you all for your incredible support in reaching this milestone. We met this goal at the end of 2018, but I have been waiting to announce the exciting news until another piece of it had fully come together. After a thorough search to find just the right place, we have officially found a safe space for the girls and Aunties to meet, learn and share new experiences that is located in urban Victoria Falls.

When I am visiting, I will get to see the space myself and share all about it with you when I am back. I am also planning to spend some time with several girls painting the space, and once I depart they will continue to refurbish the space so that it is their own and the perfect girls club meeting place!

I cannot thank you all enough for your tremendous support of The Seraphine Project. It truly means the world to me. I look forward to meeting many more milestones together in the future! As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions!

Love,

Emily

Live in the Moment

Hello Everyone!

I hope everyone is having a great holiday season!

Over the summer, I was fortunate enough to take a trip with a travel company called “Moondance Adventures.” Moondance coordinates summer trips to some of the most awe-inspiring places all around the world that teens are able to participate in. I took a Moondance trip to Belize and Costa Rica, and I am planning to visit Spain and Morocco with the company next summer. Recently, Moondance began a blog called, “Unplugged”. The name originates from one of the many features that makes their trips so unique…no technology!! One of the many blessings is that everyone is completely unplugged from life back at home, encouraging teens to constantly “live in the moment” on their trips.

A photo of one of the days of service that I participated in while visiting Costa Rica!

A photo of one of the days of service that I participated in while visiting Costa Rica!

This picture is when we went white water rafting in Costa Rica.

This picture is when we went white water rafting in Costa Rica.

Living in the moment is probably one of the most memorable lessons I took away from the incredible experience. I struggle with this notion in my everyday life, but Moondance really helped me gain a better understanding of the importance of this. You may be asking yourself, “how does this relate to The Seraphine Project?” Well, this is also one of the many concepts that my friends in Africa have taught me. They are all so fantastic at being their best-self in the exact moment they are in. Not worrying about what is happening tomorrow or month away. Simply focused on being present. I feel so blessed to be able to learn and gain such an abundance of knowledge from both the girls, as well as from the Moondance experience.

I feel so honored to share that I have been featured on the new Moondance blog representing The Seraphine Project in their most recent post, “the season of giving.” I will share the link below if ya’ll would like to read more.

https://moondanceadventures.com/blog/season-of-giving/

This photo shows my entire group in Belize.

This photo shows my entire group in Belize.

Happy holidays and wishing everyone a wonderful new year spent with family and friends!!

Love,

Emily

We are the African Girls, Strong and Brave.

Hello and happy fall!

I wanted to share with you guys a poem that I wrote last spring in school in honor of my friends at the “Girls Time” club in Victoria Falls. The poem is called a sonnet, which has a specific rhyming and syllabus pattern. Here is the poem:

We are the African Girls, Strong and Brave

With life in havoc, falls thunder nearby

I desire a safe and quiet place

Trudging along in the sun from the sky

Sometimes it feels as if we have no space

Pencils scratch and papers shuffle at school

Mama and Daddy are never around

A life so overwhelming is not cool

Depth of my world seems extremely profound

She looks at me with promise and intrigue

Offers me a new opportunity

Now I am part of a girls only league

The “Club” gives me a place of unity

Female energy brightens up the room

“Auntie” believes in me and helps me bloom

I would like to share with you a bit more about Victoria Falls. Some of y’all may have been there to visit and many others have not. Before we visited I knew that there was poverty in the areas surrounding where the girls lived, but I pictured it as more of a resort place with gorgeous falls inside of it. Yes, the falls are stunning. However the town is in extreme poverty, and several of the girls who live 10 minutes away have never even had the opportunity to visit. On one side of the town is an area with the falls. Entering is not dissimilar to entering a zoo. You buy a pass and then are able to walk in. Outside there are many markets with people trying to sell paintings, animal carvings, bracelets, etc. Just less than a few miles away are the girls. They still live in the same town, but there is widespread poverty all around.

Even though the girls live in such a difficult area, they embrace it and are incredibly proud of their homes and families. Since being in a club, they have gained so much more self confidence and are able to stay in school more easily than they were before because they are kept accountable. Auntie Procedure, the aunt who runs “Girls Time”, has become like an older sister or mother to the girls in the club.

I sent a copy of the poem I wrote to Smokey, who works on the ground in Victoria Falls with the girls, and he shared it with the girls. One of the girls, Ratzi, performed my poem as a rap. It is so amazing to see the increase in the confidence among the girls even since we visited a year ago. I can really tell that the clubs are making an enormous impact. I am going to share the video with you below because it is truly remarkable.

I challenge everyone reading this to watch this video and keep in mind the situations that many of the girls deal with at home and within their community. Consider the confidence and drive that Ratzi shows in this video and apply it in at least one thing you do this week. Whether it is going up to someone new and making them feel welcome, or going the extra mile for someone in your community, or pushing pushing yourself do so something outside your confidence. It could be anything. And while you are doing this, keep in mind these incredible girls who are giving it their best every single day because their future depends on it.

Here is the video.

I hope that the video was as inspirational to you as it was to me!

Love,

Emily Bronstein




Welcome.

Hi y'all! I am so excited to finally have this website up and running. Ever since I started The Seraphine Project in honor of my Bat Mitzvah over a year ago, this has been a goal of mine. This website is meant to be a hub for my project in order to find updates, learn more, and see some of the change happening. 

I wanted to kick off the website with an extremely inspirational video. I think it truly captures the mission of The Seraphine Project. 

The video below was taken during the time my family spent in Africa this past November. We had the pleasure of meeting with a couple different clubs. This club, Girls Time, is truly a special group of girls. I developed a really strong relationship with them during my time visiting. Every month or so, Smokey, one of GSGC's main leaders, organizes a Skype call with the girls and me. Usually, because of the time change I am on my way to school during this call. It always is the highlight if my week to get to talk to my best friends across the globe.  

Now back to the video: the friends I just wrote about are the ones singing. Believe it or not, they wrote the song themselves. It's pretty amazing!! 

Stay tuned for updates. I am hoping to post periodically! Thanks to everyone as always for your support - it means the world to me!!

Please see the video below. 

Love, Emily