Doing Good: YWCA’s Teen Girls in Technology gets a boost

Local credit union donates $10,000 to career program for young women

Last year, in a plan to get more engaged within the community it served and to make a bigger impact, Delta Community Credit Union launched its Philanthropic Fund which is donating $70,000 to various nonprofit groups and programs around the city in 2014.

“We wanted make an impact for our families and especially our young people when it comes to financial literacy and help them understand how to become financially independent for a successful future,” said Jai Rogers, vice president of business development. “The fund was our way of getting to expand our reach also develop a personal understanding of the community that we serve.”

In alignment with the goals of outreach for the Philanthropic Fund, one of the many grant winners was the YWCA’s Teen Girls in Technology. The program was awarded $10,000.

Inspiring girls to start thinking about their futures, the YWCA wanted to encourage young women to start thinking of careers in science, technology, engineering and math to build on the growing presence of women in the fields that are mostly male-dominated.

Started in 2006, the program wanted to promote STEM to middle school girls in diverse communities. “Seventh grade is when girls start thinking about their future, and we wanted to find a hands-on approach to help them gain interest in science and technology through this program,” said Judy Brown-Fears, program manager for YWCA’s TGI Tech.

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TGI Tech is an after-school program starting in middle school that requires at least a two-year committment.

The program has resulted in 80 percent of its participants since 2006 to major in STEM fields in college.

“Through the program, we can show the girls that science, technology, math, and engineering is in everything. A lot of our girls love fashion so we show them that knowing math and understanding measurements is how that is implemented in everyday life,” said Brown-Fears.

Currently the program is serving over 500 girls in 13 schools in Atlanta Public Schools, Fulton and DeKalb counties. When it comes to volunteers, TGI Tech looks for business women who are in STEM fields to speak to the girls, and get involved in hands on learning such as shadow days or field experiences.

The DCCU grant allows the YWCA to continue and expand its work for young women in the community.

“We are excited to partner with such organizations like the YWCA’s TGI Tech,” said Rogers. “We definitely want to build a close relationship with our community professionally and personally, and support our youth towards a great future.”

Delta Community Credit Union’s 2014 Philanthropic Fund grant recipients include the Atlanta Community Food Bank, the Brain Tumor Foundation, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s Reach Out and Read Program, the Cobb Schools Foundation, Cool Girls, Fayette Youth Protection, Georgia Health Sciences, the Georgia Center for Non-Profits, Girls, Inc., the Joseph Sams School, North Fulton Community Charities, Rocky Mount Elementary School, Sara Harp Minter Elementary School, St. Vincent de Paul and the YWCA of Greater Atlanta.

In other news: Good Sports Inc. and the Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation awarded more than $80,000 worth of athletic equipment to 19 community organizations working to improve youth fitness, reduce childhood obesity and promote healthy lifestyles for Georgia’s youth. The current donations will expand opportunities for 6,200 youth.

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