Here you can learn more about what GEMs means to some of our members:
“To me, GEMs is fundamentally about empowerment and enablement. It’s about helping women and girls to break down societal or self-imposed barriers that all too often inhibit them for one reason or another. It is also about providing an inspiring and freeing platform to organically network and do good things on a wide scale. It’s about connecting like-minded individuals to provide a forum for them to learn, develop, and grow together.”
— Agnes Wilewicz
“Gem is about empowerment, internal and external. After we formally created GEM, we quickly realized that for true change and empowerment of girls and women, we must include all humans into the cause. We can feel empowered and we must also educate and make changes to support that empowerment in the world at-large. I’ve always believed in treating all humans as that; humans. No barriers, no limiters. But the current reality is the entire world doesn’t. GEM is about supporting young girls to believe in themselves and their paths, and not following some outdated script of who they’re expected to be, but instead to live their own, self- defined/self-determined authentic life. GEM creates the connections, communications and opportunities for that to happen.”
— Dainna Pearlman
“I was born and raised in Poland. Came to the US in 1986. For an immigrant, and a woman who still speaks with an bit of a foreign accent, GEMs means teaching girls to think for themselves. To acquire and retain the ability to be sure of yourself. Never doubt that you can do anything you want. No social, economic, racial constrains should be able to stop you. No prejudice, like “it is just this way”, “this is how it should be”, or even worse “you are just a girl, or a woman” should ever determine your life.”
— Marzena Wilewicz
“As a young girl I was not empowered to dream big. It was not a girl/women’s place to want more than the ‘norm’ and going to college was nursing, teaching, accounting and culinary. When I joined the military, it was evident that, although rank was supposed to weigh heavier than a person’s sex, it did not hold true. When I became manager at an IVF center and gained access to salaries, I was horrified at the discrepencies between the male vs female staff. When I started my own company, I heard over and over again how “women businesses w/o a man don’t succeed or do as well”. In my 25yrs in Gyn I have heard thousands of nauseating and heartbreaking stories of sexual assault on women who either were too afraid to say no, they were blamed for the assault or dismissed when they reported it. Empowering, Educating, and Elevating girls to their highest potential. Teaching them to dream early and how to hold that as they move through teen and adulthood – in the US and around the world – is/will be a game changer. As Kamala Harris said in her victory speech “Every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities. Dream with ambition, lead with conviction, and see yourselves in a way that others may not, simply because they’ve never seen it before, but know that we will applaud you every step of the way.”
— Lisa V.
“I am a GEM because it helps me to adopt a pro self attitude that advocates empathy for all beings.”
— Christine E
“G.E.M. is a safe place to talk about things going on in your life without feeling judged. You’re able to be unapologetically yourself.”
— Katie M
“GEM is about lifting each other up, not tearing each other down. It’s about promoting equality and working to improve opportunities for girls everywhere.”
— Christine D
“GEM is a great way to spend time with interesting women and girls, sharing laughs and experiences.”
— Jeanne B.
“My favorite GEM activity is Ultimate frisbee. And I like hanging out with the other girls. -“
— Meredith B.
“Being a GEM is not only a fun and exciting experience but also a great way to help and spread awareness for the Girls Empowerment Movement. The GEMs have done great things and I’m happy I’m able to be a part of it.”
— Sophie P.
“GEMS is a cadre of girls and women who strive for equality and peace.”
— Darilyn S.
“Being a BUP is a great way to support ourselves and fellow GEMS while engaging through conversation, action, creativity and mindfulness.”
— Max and Cal E.