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Womens History Month

Jane Ott, Senior Vice President

March is Women’s History Month, and as a women-owned business, Youthbeat® can’t resist an opportunity to highlight strong women.  There are so many inspiring examples of women in history to highlight, but we are living women’s history in the making just in these first few months of 2021! The start of 2021 saw...

  • Women making historyThe first Black and Indian Vice President, Kamala Harris 
  • Amanda Gorman as the first National Youth Poet Laureate 
  • Kathrin Jansen (the head of vaccine research and development at Pfizer) collaborate and lead the creation of a successful COVID-19 vaccine which is now reaching wider and wider distribution 
  • Super Bowl referee, Sarah Thomas
  • A Black woman to coach in pro baseball, Bianca Smith 
  • Female Director-General of the World Trade Organization, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala  
  • And that’s not even all of it!   

These women are certainly inspiring, but we are equally impressed by the stories that we hear of young women taking steps every day to make a difference in their worlds and create their own historical moments.  They may not even realize the impact they are having, but we find inspiration in their bravery, talents, and enthusiasm as they pave the way for any girl to see that it’s possible to make a difference by following their own passions and what excites them.  

  • Gitanjali Rao (15), Time Magazine’s first-ever Kid of the Year, a scientist and inventor who is developing solutions for cyberbullying, contaminated drinking water, and opioid addiction. 
  • Mari Copeny (13), known as Little Miss Flint, started advocating for clean water in her hometown of Flint, MI at 8 years old with a letter to President Obama which encouraged him to visit and offer relief funds, and who has been continuing her dedication to social justice. 
  • Marley Dias (16), who saw the lack of representation in the books she was assigned to read in school and, at age 11, founded 1000 Black Girl Books that collects and donates books with Black lead characters.  She also wrote her own kids book featuring herself as a lead character to inspire others.  
  • Grace Callwood (16), after being diagnosed at age seven with (and later beating) lymphoma, founded the We Cancerve Movement to bring happiness to some of society’s most vulnerable youth.  She’s Chairwoman of the all-youth board of We Cancerve.   

It feels like these young women are only the tip of the iceberg of young history-makers in our world.  But what we have been seeing is not only an increase in remarkable women who are making history, but also an increase in organizations, magazines, media, and brands that are working to empower girls, so they have an opportunity to be the next “history maker.” 

  • Magazines like Kazoo, an ad-free magazine just for girls ages 5 to 12, that is not just fun and engaging, but also inspires girls to be “noisemakers” and be their own role models.   
  • Podcasts and books like Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls about extraordinary real-life women throughout history who didn’t give up.   
  • Non-profits that empower girls and build confidence and encouragement like Girl Up, Girls on the Run, Girls, Inc., She’s the First, She Should Run, and Girls for a Change. 
  • And, beyond media and non-profits, beauty and fashion brands are offering increasing ways for young women to quite literally wear their strength on their sleeves.  

Our POV: 
Learning history is important, but living this history will inspire all kids to break their own barriers.  We live in a time of rapid awareness and recognition of the strengths and contributions of people of all kinds and where these barrier-breaking moments are coming more and more frequently.  Finding ways as a brand to contribute to the future successes of young women across the globe will make us all stronger in the end.  We will leave you with the ever-inspiring words of Amanda Gorman, this time about her own journey: “You really have to crown yourself with the belief that what I’m about and what I’m here for is way beyond this moment. I’m learning that I am not lightning that strikes once. I am the hurricane that comes every single year, and you can expect to see me again soon.” Let us all help the youth of today recognize their own power.

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