May 3, 2010 In honor of Girls Rights Week, advocating for positive change in the world, I’m going to run a week long series of “all things girl” to show how media and marketing can HELP rather than hinder healthy development.
What IS Girls Rights Week? Another ‘Hallmark holiday’ you ask? Not by a long shot…
As one who changed radio channels four times on the way to school this morning just to dodge the smut-n-submit messages permeating the airwaves of ‘what girls are good for’ Girls Rights Week couldn’t come at a better time for me. I needed a shower just to hose off the messaging pollution seeping deep into girls’ psyches…and that was just the drive time slot!
Yeah, yeah, teen tribe, I know, you TELL me you “don’t listen to the lyrics, you just like the beat” but meh, let’s just say subliminal context is pervasive and you’re kidding yourself if you don’t think it’s landing on you sideways at some level…Have a look at some of the APA research, ladies. Corporate, industry and community orgs who want to help support girls rights? Here are 10 SPECIFIC things you can do. Parents, concerned adults? Talking tips and active listening skills for you, too.
It’s an annual celebration by the amazing Girls Inc.org (“inspiring all girls to be strong, smart and bold”) which girl advocates like Claire Mysko recap nicely here asking, “what would the world look like” if all girls had these six biggies in their own Bill of Rights.
Here are the Girls Inc basic rights. What other rights would you add?
1. Girls have the right to be themselves and to resist gender stereotypes.
2. Girls have the right to express themselves with originality and enthusiasm.
3. Girls have the right to take risks, to strive freely, and to take pride in success.
4. Girls have the right to accept and appreciate their bodies.
5. Girls have the right to have confidence in themselves and be safe in the world.
6. Girls have the right to prepare for interesting work and economic independence.
How can we make this happen? Right here. Right now?
For starters, I’ll kick off with a recap of Shaping Youth’s hefty links list featuring stories of positive change agents making a difference so that we’re empowering girls rather than consuming them in the pop culture zeitgeist…
Then I’ll add my own open-ended question of ‘what can we do?’ to create less toxic environs for BOTH genders using media/marketing as a powerful distribution channel?
And…I’ll do an all girl update this week on recent media and marketing messages that could use an overhaul, with solutions-based approaches for ways we can SUPPORT girls fully to obtain these basic rights.
Finally, I’ll send a LOUD shoutout to all the other girls’ advocates and favorite orgs like Jess Weiner, (creating a nation of confident women and girls) and Hardy Girls Healthy Women that we need to band together and unite in a hub and spoke system that creates a healthier world for all kids. (yes, BOYS are getting hammered by the stress of these cues too, it’s profiteering at the expense of socio-emotional development!)
For digital divas, I’m adding this starter list of Women To Follow on Twitter dedicated to inspiring girls and finally, I’m making an open-ended invitation to add your own name in the comment section and tip us off to your favorite girl-worthy sites to expand the list and accelerate the conversation into actions that unite us all in furthering these rights and goals.
The commenter that offers the most helpful site links that we haven’t already mentioned will receive a copy of Packaging Girlhood by Shaping Youth advisory board members Dr. Lyn Mikel Brown and Dr. Sharon Lamb!
So have at it, stay tuned…and gear up for Girls Rights Week here on Shaping Youth with discussions of ‘all things girl’ taking place in the media right now.
Next up? Wrapping up the spring scene of “prom-a” (and the amped up role of media/marketing/MTVSweet 16-ish expectations) “Formspring” (anonymous tool for some less than ideal peer to peer harassment) and how we can all dial down the sensationalism and drama of bullying, frenemie media culture and girls caught in the blast zones.
Rock on Girls Inc…Your message is a necessary and powerful one…Thanks for all you do.
Shaping Youth’s Positive Media–All Things Girl Week Recap
In Honor of Girls Inc’s Girls Rights Week May 3-7, 2010
Girls Inc’s Girls Rights Week Bill of Rights & Knowledge Sharing
Get involved and launch your own campaign for girls’ rights:
- How did your own opportunities for physical activity empower you to appreciate and accept your body? Respond to Girls Inc. on Twitter or Facebook.
- Follow Girls Inc on Twitter and Facebook to join the community of advocates for girls’ rights: get updates about Girls’ Rights Week, read supporters’ messages, recruit friends to the campaign, and raise support for girls’ rights.
Shaping Youth Positive Media/Marketing For Girls, cont…