As you can imagine I follow many-o-blog these days. I find it to be a very raw, honest, creative, & witty way to check in on home style & fashion trends from the mouths of consumers rather than highly trained marketers. Most bloggers leave their motives at the door & write from their honest perspective whether or not they receive advertising incentives. During one of my daily reads on a fashion-gone-love-yourself blog I discovered a link to I Am That Girl. They are a non-profit with a mission & an incredible mission if you ask me. Parallel to my Body Love movement they are determined to change the way the media personifies women. They are sick of women being portrayed in ways that make us feel bad about our bodies, our income level, ourselves. They are a pro-women, pro -men who support women, pro -love your beautiful self, non-profit. Already I Am That Girl has done amazing things like a meeting with the White House where they invited special celebrity guests and other organizations to to rally support around their mission. They have launched their own TV network, That Girl TV, on You Tube, and make regular public speaking appearances spreading their message to audiences of all ages all over the country. Emily Greener is the Executive Director of I Am That Girl and was nice enough to answer some of my questions. Check it out:
DKG: Your quest to empower women and girls is amazing! What prompted you to start I Am That Girl?
IATG: Alexis Jones came up with the concept in college before we ever met. After doing a play by Eve Ensler called The Vagina Monologues she discovered her passion of being a stand for girls and women. She went back to her sorority house after opening night and started talking with some girls about how many conversations we have about things that don’t matter and presented the question, “What if once a week we had conversations that did?” That was the spark that lit her idea for a nonprofit that inspired confidence through conversation, collaboration, and community.
DKG: What would you like to see come out of IATG?
IATG: I would like to see IATG revolutionize media to mainstream a message of collaboration instead of competition and beauty in the form of more than just physical. I would like to see a community that transcends borders, class, race and religion and is contributing to something bigger than ourselves. I would like to see more people inspired, more people loving themselves first, more vulnerability and camaraderie, more honesty and communication. I want to see IATG starting conversations that impact the individual and the world.
DKG: You talk about creating healthy media, what is healthy media and how will this inspire change?
IATG: Healthy Media is content that lifts you up instead of breaking you down. It’s content that inspires, provokes thought and conversation, and depicts the every day portrayal of women living, loving and learning in the 21st Century.
DKG: I understand you recently visited the White House to discuss the current state of media and its detrimental effects on women & girls. How was your message received? Were there any interesting ideas or strategies that came out of your time there?
IATG: It was received incredibly well. The White House Council on Women and Girls is very interested in our solutions and is excited to watch us execute them so they can support. The influential women we brought are using their platforms to promote a positive message and came together as a living example of what’s possible when we collaborate.
DKG: How can I get involved to help the cause?
IATG: Our foundation is built on having conversations and building community. We want to do that through social networking and media. So create a piece of media… a photo, a video, a piece of text expressing what makes you THAT GIRL, what you admire most in yourself and in others. Upload the video to youtube, tag I AM THAT GIRL and email us the link at info@IAMTHATGIRL. Donations also always help! You can donate atwww.IAMTHATGIRL.com
DKG: What other organizations do you respect with a similar vision?
IATG: Some of our favorites organizations are Girl Up, Invisible Children, Charity:Water, and FEED
DKG: You cover other countries & cultures on your site, are taking your mission worldwide?
IATG: Yes, we are looking forward to developing our THAT GIRL GOES GLOBAL program in the next 3 years. We always want a global perspective online through our blogs, media and social networking.
DKG: As a woman how can I empower myself? How can I encourage my friends to do the same?
IATG: We believe the word empowerment is synonymous with the recognition of choice. You can choose to be grateful, choose tospend your time thinking about how you can love yourself (and others) more instead of less, you can choose to lead by example, to contribute to this world instead of consume, to collaborate instead of compete, to learn what you don’t know, to validate your own feelings and express vulnerability, to create meaningful relationships and have conversations that matter. You choose how you let something or someone effect you and what your perspective is on life. That’s empowering. And no one can take that from you.
DKG: You are taking the world by storm… what’s next for IATG?
IATG: We are launching an online network of healthy media. We are creating content not just for you, but with you. We want everyone to participate in the conversations we have. As the end of the day, that’s all we want to do… have conversations that build community both locally and online. We want to do it through media and through local chapters. We plan on revolutionizing media to popularize content that lifts girls and women up instead of breaking them down. Join our mission, rock this world, and be THAT GIRL!
Oh my, I feel inspired! It is so refreshing to find an organization like I Am That Girl and know that there are others out there who want to make a difference and want women & girls to love themselves the way they are. I hope you will check out their website and get involved whether you make a donation, send in a piece of media, or better yet look in the mirror and just love yourself. Thank you Emily for taking the time to answer my questions! I know this is just the very beginning of the amazing things we will see from I Am That Girl! You can follow I Am That Girl via blog, That Girl TV, or make a donation.
I feel confident in saying, on behalf of all of us, please love yourself just the way you are and help others do the same!
Stylishly yours with gratitude to IATG,
Photos sourced from IATG website