Girl Up is a club here at St. John’s, but it is also part of a worldwide organization founded by the United Nations in 2010 that focuses on empowering girls to defend gender equality. The organization has given young women a platform to make social change happen across the globe. Through its investments in United Nations programming and leadership training programs, Girl Up has impacted more than 80,000 girls globally.
In years prior, St. John’s Girl Up chapter was mostly about helping young women worldwide, through different fundraisers for women in countries across the world that needed help. This year, seniors Annie Hagerty and Emily Place, who have been the heads of the club since 2016, are switching things up a little. They now want to focus on St. John’s and the DC area.
They plan on tackling issues that all high school girls face by conducting more in-depth conversations about respect and accountability and focusing on issues they feel affect girls at St. John’s, such as dress code rules. They also plan to go to Capitol Hill to advocate for women abroad that do not face the same issues they do.
When asked about her favorite aspect of Girl Up, Hagerty said, “How much energy everyone has about advocacy and equality.” Place said, “My goals for Girl Up are for us to learn as much as possible about the issues that girls face in places where it’s hardest to be a girl [and] do everything in our power to help them. For me, Girl Up is a place for a bunch of people who want to help others working together to try to make a difference in the world. I think that’s really amazing.”