Transform Aotearoa has had many successes over Term One, but top of our highlights has been the ShineGIRL programme that has run in Putaruru College for a group of year 9 and 10 students.

Over nine weeks, our passionate facilitators Marilyn Baldwin and Amber Hohaia facilitated ShineGIRL to invest in the lives of a group of 10 young ladies selected from Putaruru College. The girls met together each week to learn and grow in the way that they think about themselves. The girls bonded and blossomed in new ways and gained confidence and understanding of who they are and what they can achieve if they follow their dreams. Towards the end of the programme, the girls created dream and vision boards using pictures and words to express hopes and dreams and this was a very powerful session. The programme ended with a graduation celebration at Transform Aotearoa, catered by The Wooden Farmer. Each graduate invited a special female person in their lives to join for a banquet together and they shared their dream boards and give speeches about what ShineGIRL has meant to them and how it has impacted their life. One participant said, “Shine has given me a whole new outlook on life”.

The 9 week program personal development and group mentoring tool is run around New Zealand and in over 40 countries, and is uses an experiential, practical and inspirations approach, which aims to give girls skills to approach their education, and ultimately their future, with confidence and commitment. The ShineGIRL program aims to improve self-esteem in girls by encouraging participants to engage in a series of activities that seek to change the way participants think about themselves. The ShineGIRL Programme addresses several key areas, exploring Self Awareness, Personal Decision Making, Managing Feelings, Communication Skills, Self Acceptance, Personal Responsibility and Conflict Resolution.

ShineGIRL is making a difference in the lives of our young teens and we are confident that the investment will reap great benefits as these girls grow and develop into fantastic contributing members of society. Feedback from the programme this term has been outstanding, with one teacher commenting on the positive change the staff see in these girls when they go through the ShineGIRL program and that they want this course to continue for as long as possible.

In Term Two, we are looking to deliver another ShineGIRL programme, alongside a Strength programme for teen boys at Putaruru College. All participants receive a journal to record their learning journey and take this away with them to remind themselves of these lessons and personal applications. If you would like to know more about these programmes, or help financially support these programmes, please contact Transform Aotearoa.