Girls Inc. of Lynn is thankful for each and every one of the volunteers that help drive our mission to inspire girls to be strong, smart, and bold. Volunteers have made a tremendous impact on our organization and this month we’re highlighting our volunteer Jill Dearborn’s journey at Girls Inc.
Jill began volunteering at Girls Inc. a few years ago in the School-Aged Childcare Program where she helped with the literacy program for the five and six year old girls.
“I just loved working with them. It was really sweet because throughout the year you really see their progress,” she said. “It was very fulfilling.”
Jill recognized the importance of being civically engaged and ran Get Out The Vote, a six-week program for middle school and high school aged girls where she taught girls the importance of voting, how to register to vote, and even ran a voter registration drive in Girls Inc. ‘s lobby to encourage girls and their families to vote. “Girls in middle and high school can’t vote, but they can actively encouraged and help educated those around them who are voters,” she said.
Her love for volunteering at Girls Inc doesn’t stop there. After becoming a reader for the Girl Hero scholarship, she understood even more the impact Girls Inc. has on the girls. “Reading the applications broadened my awareness of the depths of the Girls Inc. programs for middle and high school girls,” she said. “I would get goosebumps reading the girls’ experiences through their essays and then I had a real understanding of the impacts these programs had and I loved the organization more and wanted to help.”
Jill was then interested in volunteering for our career readiness program, Career Path. “I just thought I could bring my network of women and I could find more professional women for career speaker panels, potential internships, or job shadow posts to help broaden the girls’ understanding of the different careers available,” she said.
Although COVID-19 has made programming virtual and she misses the building full of girls, virtual programming has made it easier to pull a variety of women to speak for career panels to help further expose different careers to the girls. “Now it doesn’t matter if our speakers are in the outskirts of Boston or two states away, they can participate in our panels virtually,” she said.
“I’ve found that Girls Inc. is one organization where it’s just an easy ask. I’m happy to ask people to help and people will always say yes. It’s such a worthwhile organization,” she said.
Volunteers like Jill make our girls’ experiences worthwhile and we are so grateful! Thank you Jill for everything you do!