Teen Voices’ own Saun Green is a professional when it comes to empowering teen girls—literally. As the director of transformational leadership at Teen Voices, Green is the heart and soul of the office, as well as the driving force behind the SHOUT! (Sisters Helping OtherUnheard Teens) journalism, mentoring, and leadership program. She works closely with the teen editors who make the magazine possible. Green’s greatest passion is helping teen girls grow, change, and accept themselves for who they are. After twelve years of working with teens and eight years of striving to make the SHOUT! program the best it can be, she’s sure her hard work has been well worth the effort. Teen Voicespeer leaders Bria Gadsden and Joi Kelley spoke with Green about motivation, inspiration, and the true potential of girls to create change in the world.
Girl Gamer Jane McGonigal's Strategy to Changing the World
There are one billion gamers throughout the world. Whether playing on their phone, TV, computer, or in real life, gamers are everywhere. Jane McGonigal, author of Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World, is an expert in and creator of alternate reality games, in which your virtual world gaming can apply to reality. McGonigal plays on the collaborative aspect of games to work to solve such issues as hunger and poverty—a game presents players with an issue, and the players implement ways to solve it.
Rachel O'Sullivan: Where Science Meets Compassion
Rachel O’Sullivan graduated college ready to take on the world—and she already has! At age 15, O’Sullivan studied abroad in Ghana and created a program there to promote science and education among the local young women. She has since studied health education, and she’s using her knowledge to teach women in Tanzania about sexual health, and to try to create a international network of health information for women. She spoke with Teen Voices to explain how her knowledge of science has allowed her to help women around the world.
Jess Weiner: Actionist, Ambassador, and Advocate for Girls
Jess Weiner is an author, advice columnist, and major media personality. She is also an ambassador for the Dove Movement for Self-Esteem. Weiner reaches out to young women to promote self-confidence and body awareness. Weiner travels worldwide speaking with community leaders, mothers, and daughters. Teen Voices peer leaders Bria Gadsden, 17, and Denesha Peter, 18, spoke with Weiner to discuss self-confidence, self-awareness, and her future plans.
Jennifer Buffett and the Power of Girls
Women and girls are at the center of life. This is the philosophy that guides Jennifer Buffett's life. Daughter-in-law of Warren Buffett and cofounder, with her husband Peter, of the NoVo Foundation in New York, she harbors a philosophy close to that of Teen Voices. By empowering women and girls, Buffett hopes to foster change and encourage those in power to partner with and invest in girls, rather than dominating, oppressing, or forgetting about them altogether.
How Kimberly Nichole Does Kimberly Nichole
Seattle-born alternative rock/soul singer Kimberly Nichole is beginning to turn a lot of heads within the music industry. This self-described "rock ballerina" has caught the notice of such popular media forces as BET, Vogue, and Seventeen magazine with her genre-defying tunes, soulful voice, unique style, and flair for captivating live performances. Despite her busy schedule, Kimberly also takes time to contribute to causes that are important to her. Teen Voices editorial intern Carolyn Schweitzer spoke with Kimberly about musical inspiration and staying true to yourself!"
Alexx Calise: Singing--and Giving--Like a Rock Star!
Teen Voices intern Michelle Golden talked with Alexx Calise, a young L.A- based singer, songwriter, and guitarist who finds time to rock on stage and promote education and brain trauma research with charitable foundations. Calise gives her guitar strings to Wear Your Music, a foundation that takes guitar strings donated by various artists and creates beautiful bracelets. Fans then buy the bracelets to support various charities chosen by the artist. Read on to hear more about Calise and how you can give back like a rock star!
She's The First...Executive Director!
For those teen girls growing up and attending free public school in a privileged area of the world such as the United States, it's easy to take your education for granted. Not only teen girls, but the people around them, often assume that girls will work for and receive their high school diplomas ... Not every girl is born with so many opportunities. For girls in developing areas of the globe, attending school is often just a far-off dream. The ones in school, especially those in high school and beyond, realize that school is a privilege and feel lucky.
From the Olympics to Girls' Sports and Eating Disorders Recovery—Go Girl Go!
Teen Voices' Megan McPhilemy spoke with Whitney Post, former executive director of the GoGirlGo! Boston chapter, about her work with the program and her new project, the Eating for Life Alliance.
UK singer-songwriter Kate Nash is all about empowering teen girls! Her international youth outreach initiative called Kate Nash's Rock 'N Roll for Girls After School Music Club is designed to provide an environment that facilitates mentoring teen girls musically. Teen Voices' Michelle Golden got to speak briefly to the busy UK rock star in March 2011 about why music is so important to her—and why it should be for all teen girls out there!
Teen Voices Peer Leaders Saché Register and Ajané Searcy recently had the opportunity to speak with Donna Brazile. Ms. Brazile is a political trailblazer—the first African-American woman to serve as a presidential campaign manager. She's worked on every presidential campaign from 1976 to 2000, including the campaigns of former President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore. In addition, she is a professor, newspaper columnist, political commentator, and author of the best-selling memoir Cooking with Grease: Stirring the Pots in American Politics. She has been named one of Essence magazine's "Top 50 Women in America."
Love music? Always wanted to become a musician? Teen Voices' Michelle Golden got the chance to speak to Rachel Platten, a New York City singer-songwriter, pianist, and beatboxer. Alongside singing and pursuing her dream, Rachel volunteers her time to Musicians on Call, a non-profit organization that delivers the healing power of music to patients in health care facilities.
Harvard sophomore Nadia Farjood found her passion for social justice and women's empowerment at an early age. At 17, she established an organization for women's issues, and developed a fundraising walk for a global community of underprivileged young women and girls. In 2009, she won the Women's eNews leadership award for her work fundraising for girls in Iran and Afghanistan. Teen Voices' Ashley Morris learns more about her inspiring work with girls.