AAUW’s Sister-to-Sister Summit brings together diverse, middle school girls to address issues that concern them.
AAUW Tarrant County Branch collaborates with middle school counselors to recruit girls for the summit. This year we are expecting more than 100 middle school girls from seven schools within Fort Worth ISD. They will participate in our Saturday mentor program aimed at promoting self-esteem and healthy values by giving young girls the tools needed to find solutions to their problems. Those in attendance receive a free t-shirt and gift bag, plus breakfast and lunch.
Each year we provide training for local college women to facilitate the sessions for the middle school girls. These near-peer interactions provide the middle school girls an opportunity to spend a full Saturday interacting in small groups with current college students. Many of our college women volunteer mentors attended the summit themselves as middle school students.
We collaborated with one school for our first Summit and held it in a middle school. We now work with seven Fort Worth ISD middle schools and hold the Summit at Tarrant County College. We have utilized both the Trinity River and Northwest campuses of TCC.
Several organizations support Sister-to-Sister Summit. Our supporters are Fort Worth ISD; Tarrant County College Trinity River and North West Campuses; TCU Center for Urban Education; and Delta Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, an international society which promotes professional and personal growth of women educators and excellence in education.
The Middle School years are a transition from childhood to teen, when girls often encounter problems with self-esteem, academic pressure, temptations, disappointment or rejection. AAUW Sister-to-Sister Summits provide girls the tools to help them deal with these various obstacles, while encouraging them to stay in school, graduate from high school and strive to attend college.
The 2018 Summit was the 18th consecutive year for Sister-to-Sister. This year, nine women formed the steering committee which met during the late spring and summer to plan the fall event. Annual expenses run between $1000-2500. Tarrant County College graciously provides the venue and food (breakfast and lunch) without cost. FWISD provides bus transportation without cost as well. In addition to items solicited from local businesses, our members donate items to be put in the girls’ gift bags. We purchase t-shirts for each of the girls and this year also purchased age-appropriate books to add to their gift bags.
Counselors from FWISD middle schools invite the students to attend and secure permission slips from the parents. Our contacts at TCU, TCC and Tarleton State recruit the college women volunteers, who are given training in the curriculum and objectives. We usually have 30-35 college women mentors.
All branch members are invited to participate on the day of the event. Members can volunteer for the following: greeters, registration, photographer, gift bag assembly, clean up, etc.
We are currently planning our 2019 Summit which will take place on Saturday, October 19, 2019. More details to follow.
2018 Theme: “Dream Your Dreams”
2017 Theme: “Uniquely Me”