YWCA TechGYRLS was initiated in 1997 by YWCA USA in response to the widening gender gap in exposure to, and interest in, technology for girls. Studies show that while girls and boys have the same aptitude for technology and sciences, by middle school participation rates for girls in technology subjects begin to drop and continue to decline through high school. This is especially true for girls in low income, underserved communities.
TechGYRLS’ goal is to broaden girls’ knowledge and interests and help them develop the confidence to use technology tools in whatever profession they pursue. These girls approach choices about their future pursuits unintimidated by science, technology, or associated gender-based stereotypes. Exploring the science, technology, and math (STEM) lessons happens in a safe, girls-only environment where, with support from women mentors, the girls feel comfortable taking risks and opening up to new learning opportunities.
TechGYRLS meet one to three times a week after school. TechGYRLS are introduced to the mission of the YWCA and envision solutions to community and social issues through new technology. They also have a lot of fun. Whether they’re taking a stand against school bullying, understanding liquid density while creating a “lava lamp,” or editing pictures that they’ve taken themselves, the girls feel excited to try new things and empowered to test and push themselves further.
To learn more about YWCA TechGYRLS, please contact Danita Lewis, VP of Child Care Solutions, (815) 316-6130.