Dear DIY Girls supporter,
In my first 5 months as the Executive Director of DIY Girls, I have been inspired by the curiosity and dedication of our girls. I am inspired by their eagerness to learn and their excitement in our programs. Girls like Allaleth, who I met during our summer woodworking camp in my first few weeks at DIY Girls. Allaleth has participated in our afterschool and summer programming every year since 5th grade. She is currently in 8th grade and as a result of our programs, wants to be a software developer or app developer because, in her words, “making apps is easy”. I sometimes wonder where her path will lead her. I think about what she will accomplish and the impact DIY Girls has had on her life.
Recently, one of our longtime donors and supporters, Jeremy Gordon (CTO, Founder at Propeller Factory and former Vice President, Engineering at Twitter), shared his motivation to support DIY Girls. “Imagining what these girls will grow up to become and knowing DIY Girls plays an important part at a pivotal time in their lives.” I think about this frequently. Each and every day, we are playing a role in shaping our girls’ paths. Your contribution to DIY Girls will help shape our girls’ lives and their future. That is why I hope you will make a donation for our girls today.
This year, we are excited to celebrate 5 years of impact. In 2012, we began serving 32 girls at one elementary school. Over the last 5 years, we have grown to serve over 2,000 girls, and we are on track to serve nearly 600 girls in 2017 alone! Women represent just 25% of employed scientists and engineers in the United States and Latinas represent only 2%. Our work to address this extreme inequality cannot be done without the support of individuals like you.
In 2017, we focused on maintaining high quality programs for elementary aged girls and developing programs for middle and high school girls. By expanding our programs, we have been able to provide continuity for our girls to further develop their STEM interests as they progress through the K-12 pipeline. We also held a biomedical engineering and woodworking camp, and are currently planning a creative coding camp for girls during their winter break.
We are especially proud of our InvenTeam girls, who created a solar powered portable shelter for homeless families after seeing an increase in homeless individuals in their community. Our InvenTeam was featured in several media outlets including Mashable, National Public Radio (NPR), Diversity in Action, and Huffington Post.
DIY Girls with CH2M and LA Metro at a special, private screening of the film “Dream Big”.
With your support, we can continue to provide these opportunities for our girls. In 2018, DIY Girls plans to expand the Creative Coding program for middle school girls and continue our Creative Electronics program for elementary school girls. We are also committed to continuing the InventGirls program (originally InvenTeam) and our summer woodworking camp. Lastly, we will continue to find engaging field trips and bring in career professionals to share their experiences and inspire our girls to think about different career paths!
Together, we can continue to increase the number of young girls who are exposed to STEM activities and careers. Like many of our girls, I grew up in the Pacoima community and understand firsthand the challenges they face. I myself was a first-generation college student who graduated from Stanford University, which had a profound impact on my life. Today, I hope that you will help us continue to make an impact on more girls from the greater Los Angeles community.
Your gift will contribute to our girls’ knowledge and future aspirations. Please support DIY Girls by donating online through our website at diygirls.org/donate or by mailing your donation to: DIY Girls, PO Box 330662, Pacoima, CA 91333. Please make your check out to SEE/DIY Girls.
Let’s show more girls like Allaleth that STEM is possible for them as well!
Leticia Rodriguez, Executive Director