Home > Uncategorized > A Letter From Our Director

With your help, we can make a huge difference.

Last weekend, the New York Times published an article called “The Families That Can’t Afford Summer”. The article explained how high costs of summer programs have driven out low-income students, who after many summers, fall far behind their classmates that can afford summer education. The author writes that though “most kids lose math skills over the summer, low income children also lose, on average, more than two months of reading skills — and they don’t gain them back. That puts them nearly three years behind higher income peers by the end of fifth grade, and the gap just keeps getting wider. Researchers credit the summer slide for about half of the overall difference in academic achievement between lower and higher income students.”

We know that this is exactly what happens in our community: the cycle of poverty is reinforced as our girls are left at home for the summer, with only a television to watch and their siblings to take care of. Their lack of learning opportunities creates a bleak cycle that they seem doomed to repeat: every year, students in our service area fall behind their more affluent peers: their opportunities diminish, their desire to do well in school decreases, and their ability to continue learning dwindles. 

This is why we created the Girl Zone Summer Camp. Girl Zone provides a space where our girls are excited to continue learning and growing, to ensure that when they go back to school in August they are prepared for the challenges that lie ahead. We continue building on the progress the girls have made in school and in our after-school program by providing them with outstanding learning opportunities. We give girls the opportunity to explore their world, the tools to achieve their dreams, and the platform to inspire their peers, and I can say with the utmost confidence and pride that we are achieving that mission every single day. 

To continue providing these excellent services to the girls who need them the most, we need your help. Today, we are launching a campaign to raise $10,000 from the community for our Girl Zone Summer Camp. I’m asking you to make a tax deductible donation to the Martinez Street Women’s Center today to help us reach our goal. Our programs have thrived because of you: the community member, the donor, the friend of the center, the supporter. Today, we need you to send a gift in whatever amount is possible for you. Our free Summer Camp runs five days a week for seven weeks, serves 75 girls, and includes three nutritious and healthy meals per day.

Can you make a donation today to help our girls have the summer that they deserve? You can mail a check in whatever amount you can give to our office at the address listed below, donate online, or ask us to come pick a gift up from your home or office.

For sponsorship opportunities for our summer camp fundraiser, from $100 – $2,500, please reach out to our Director of Fundraising (hannah@5bf.927.myftpupload.com).

Again, thank you for your support over the years — we couldn’t do this without you.

With Gratitude,

Andrea Figueroa
Executive Director

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