For the UWEAST Girl Scout troop, their time is truly enriched by the programming that the staff offers them. The games, activities, and projects all allow them to reflect on and engage with so many different parts of their identities, and many of the different themes relevant to their lives at their current age. It is clear that so much time and energy, on behalf of the staff at the community center, goes into creating activities that are enriching, meaningful and fun. So much of what is discussed and covered are things that young people might not normally gain from time spent in the classroom, which is why this program is so valuable. Over the past couple of weeks the girls have created face masks, cooked together, talked about the various things that cause stress, learned new games, watched and discussed movies, and created a list of their goals for Ramadan.

Just a few weeks ago, my group and I did an art project with the Girl Scouts where they were able to create an artistic rendering of an African country that is of importance to them. The girls had the creative range to take this project wherever they wanted and all created beautiful pieces of art that reflected parts of their African identity. There was paint, glitter, crayons and colored pencils all over the table as the girls created their works of art. Many of their art pieces contained smaller images or symbols of things that reminded them of past visits to these countries or stories they had heard. Seeing them work on these art projects and in turn discuss why they chose to do their respective projects in the way that they did reminded me of how even at a young age, youth carry so much valuable insight and knowledge on their own personal histories and identities. Ending the quarter is bittersweet as I will definitely miss spending time at the center, being around the limitless energy and enthusiasm that the young girls exude, but ultimately I am very grateful for the opportunity to have been able to get to know and learn from so many of the girls and staff at the center.