February Enewsletter: BeYOUtiful Event for Girls A Success

BeYOUtiful Event for Girls A Success

By Kat Prevo ’15

The BeYOUtiful Project began in January 2014 in Mrs. Flannery’s American Literature class when my classmates and I read The Scarlet Letter. This classic covers how women are unjustly portrayed through restrictive societal beliefs and values. Women in The Scarlet Letter’s era were viewed as property with no legal identity and no voice to change. After reading the novel, my class watched the thought-provoking film, Miss Representation, which shows how females are portrayed, used, and misrepresented in our present society.

In class we discussed both the novel and film. We talked about what society idolizes as the image of the perfect woman. We found that the typical perfect image many girls glorify is unrealistic and unattainable. This often presents a struggle for young women who grow up in such a world where media is shoved into everyday lives. Many girls in Mrs. Flannery’s American Lit classes were disappointed and infuriated that there are still visible inequalities between men and women in today’s world. Prevalent through the negative and positive influences of magazine ads, television shows, movies, music, and even politics;This ongoing inequality and misrepresentations inspired my friends and I to start the BeYOUtiful Project.

The BeYOUtiful Project focuses on EMPOWERING young women through love, confidence, and awareness. We educate girls on the negative and positive ways women are portrayed in media. We also strive to support young women in developing their own personality, style, and. We shared this message of empowerment with younger girls in middle school where body image and self-confidence starts to dramatically form.

We eagerly began our mission and planned an event on January 17th to spread the message of empowerment. Through workshops and mentoring, we focused on boosting the self-esteem of middle school girls encouraging them to take charge of their own image. We wanted to give young women the tools and motivation to go out into their community and live confidently through their own beYOUty.

Mrs. Flannery said, “January 17th was an absolutely marvelous day. Dreams came true for many girls who began working on this project last January.” The day consisted of six workshops that focused on self -love and appreciation, as well as the spectacular guest speaker and alum, Skyler McCurine. Together we inspired 200 middle school girls to show their inner beauty despite what the world tells them. Teaching middle school girls about real beauty empowered girls to be the change by going out into their community and showing what real beauty is. Seeing the faces of the impressionable girls was life changing and truly inspiring.” Flannery added, I had the amazing opportunity watching our girls live out the OLP MISSION and inspire a younger generation. I was overwhelmed with emotion and cried multiple times. It was incredible to see our concept come to life and I was reminded of Dr. Seuss’s infamous words, ‘And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.) KID, YOU’LL MOVE MOUNTAINS!’ Our girls certainly MOVED MOUNTAINS.”