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The Girls' NetworkPosted on: 21st Feb 2022
The mission of the Girls Network is to inspire and empower girls from the least advantaged communities by connecting them with a mentor and a network of professional role models who are women.
20 La Retraite students have had the opportunity to receive mentorship, and we spent time catching up with students to find out more about their experience so far.
Keira, Year 11:
"I am enjoying the Girls' Network because it helps me with areas I struggle with. For example, in one of the workshops we did, we had to deliver a speech in front of the rest of the participants. Even though I hate public speaking, I managed to complete this task with the help of my group (it was a group presentation) and I was given constructive feedback and I also gained more confidence in my public speaking skills.
This confidence came in handy when I had to do my oral exam for English. Having a mentor has also helped me as well - I have learnt a lot of things and my mentor answers my questions about the world of work and other topics I have interest in. She also provides guidance and support - I went to her for help because I was worried about the Sixth Form interview, and she gave me useful tips. In conclusion, the Girls' Network has helped me a lot and I think it is a great opportunity for the girls at our school that are a part of it."
Zeinab, Year 10:
What has your experience with the Girls Network been like?
I love being a part of the Girls network. There is nothing I can think of that I dislike. I love that I get to have mentoring sessions with an amazing female role model in a position I would like to be in when I grow up. I love the endless opportunities I get. And I love the way it makes me feel more prepared for my future.
What has helped you with?
It makes me feel less fearful for my future. Before I thought that getting into uni was difficult. Now I think it is a challenge I can overcome successfully. Now I don't see the future as a scary time to come looming over me, but as a very rewarding challenge. I have investigated the world of work and found the field I want to go into. I can now manage my study schedule and exam stress/ anxieties.
What makes the Girls Network different?
I really enjoy being a part of the girl's network because it does not put pressure on me at all. By this I mean that it only asks for my commitment and nothing else. I don't have to do well in tests or fill out endless forms to get the answers to feed my curiosity. The Girl's network is there for you, waiting for your questions and requests. For example, when I asked my mentor for an office day experience, she delivered and yet beyond and above. I am constantly reminded that I should not put too much pressure on myself. The Girl's Network has never felt like a homework task or school assignment; instead, it feels like making a professional friend there for all your needs.