October 24, 2016
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Black Women’s Health Imperative Launches Sexual Health Empowerment Program


Washington, D.C., - The Black Women's Health Imperative (Imperative) announced that it received a multi-year award from the Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health to launch a cross-generational program to empower young Black girls, ages 12-17, living in Washington, D.C., with the knowledge and skills to help them make healthier life choices.

G.L.O.W. - Girls Leading Our Way - is a family-focused empowerment program for girls to support their development of a positive self-image, increase their awareness of how to take care of their health and bodies and help them strengthen their bonds with adult female family members. The program will address the needs of Black girls living in the District by providing them with leadership development, skills building and sexual health education. 

"The spotlight is on D.C. and the health of our communities," Eleanor Hinton Hoytt, Imperative president and CEO, said. "We are leading this nation in STD infections among Black women and girls, and we must work harder to empower our women and children. When we work in communities, we find time and time again that Black girls are being faced with issues and circumstances that are hard for them to navigate. Our program will address some of the key sexual health issues affecting our young Black girls today and give them the skills to deal with real life situations that affect their social and health outcomes."

G.L.O.W. will help strengthen the girls' family relationships with their mothers, grandmothers, aunts, cousins or older sisters. Girls who are comfortable talking and sharing with trusted adult female family members have higher self-esteem and make better life choices. Having supportive relationships will help them have open discussions about issues that are important to them and understand sexual health as part of their overall physical, mental and emotional health and wellness.

Participation in the program begins by attending one of two overnight retreats on Saturday, April 24 or Saturday, May 22. After the retreat, participants will attend four bi-monthly education and activities workshops. Upon completion of the program, they will receive gifts and certificates at a celebration ceremony where they can invite their family, friends and peers to help celebrate their accomplishment.

The Imperative is currently accepting registrations to participate in G.L.O.W. There is no cost to participant in the program. Visit www.BlackWomensHealth.ORG to download an information packet and register online. For more information, contact Ronneal Mathews at rmathews@blackwomenshealth.org or call 202-548-4000, ext. 118.


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