GPS Celebrates Days Of The Girl With 2 Events

  • Friday, October 14, 2022

Girls Preparatory School celebrated the International Day of the Girl on Tuesday, Oct. 11, along with Girls Inc. of Chattanooga. The partnership between GPS and Girls Inc. offered an opportunity for the two organizations to engage with and celebrate our community and connection. 

“The Girls Inc., mission of inspiring and equipping all girls to be strong, smart and bold leaders within their families, their community and society aligns so nicely with that of our school,” says Lauren Lawrence Swanson, GPS director of belonging and community engagement.

“At GPS, we inspire each girl to lead a life of integrity and purpose by engaging her mind, cultivating her strengths and nurturing her self-confidence and respect for others.” 

While the visit to GPS is a first this year for members of Girls Inc., students at GPS have been building relationships through tutoring younger students each week at Girls Inc. of Chattanooga.

“Some of our students have been volunteering after school at Girls Inc., so it was special for them to host the girls they work with on our campus,” says Ms. Swanson, who is also dean of the freshman class. The students from Girls Inc. spent the morning on campus experiencing life at GPS. They were able to share stories, build relationships and enjoy a day of play and togetherness with their GPS peers. 

Ms. Swanson has also been coordinating the Chattanooga Day of the Girl celebration on Oct. 25, which will take place on the lower fields of GPS at Coolidge Park.

After obtaining a special proclamation from Mayor Tim Kelly (see below), the Chattanooga Day of the Girl will be celebrated on Tuesday, Oct. 25, from 1:15-3 p.m., with Girls Inc. of Chattanooga returning, joined by students from Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. In all, about 1,000 girls and their teachers will participate in a girls empowerment walk from the lower athletic fields at GPS to Coolidge Park. 

Upon arriving at Coolidge, a program honoring Chattanooga girls will commence, with the reading of the proclamation from Mayor Tim Kelly, along with a few words to acknowledge the importance of girls’ organizations in the city, officials said. Hamilton County Mayor Weston Wamp will also be reading a proclamation. Next, those gathered will hear from student representatives from all three organizations as well as their leaders: Dr. Elaine Swafford, CGLA CEO; Megan D. Cover, GPS head of school, and Toccora Johnson-Peterson, CEO of Girls Inc. of Chattanooga, as well as student representatives. 

“Our goal in creating this special day is to lift up our girls and to let them know that anything is possible,” Ms. Swanson says. “We believe that when many are gathered, voices are heard and girls are celebrated, it can have a lasting impact on how they view themselves in the world.”

The event is the first of its type in Chattanooga and organizers plan to make it an annual celebration of the community's girls.

Chattanooga Day of the Girl Proclamation from the City of Chattanooga:

Whereas women and girls have historically been founders, entrepreneurs and change-makers in Chattanooga;

Whereas schools and organizations continue to support girls through their education and leadership ventures; 

Whereas Chattanooga recognizes the ongoing need for acknowledging the impact girls and young women have on their communities through their careers, service, and families;

Therefore, Oct, 25, 2022, will be the Chattanooga Day of the Girl.

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