Mentor Empowers Teens to Live Above Bullying, Drama and Societal Pressure with New Book

efg-angled-book-imageFrom cyberbullying to societal pressure, 21st century girls face challenges that generations before them may have never imagined. But they also have unlimited resources and opportunities to live powerfully.

Rasheda Kamaria Williams, an award-winning mentor and chief empowering officer for Empowered Flower Girl, explores how girls and young women can use their personal power to make a difference in her new book, “Be EmPOWERed: How to Live Above & Beyond Life’s Drama.”

Written for and inspired by girls, “Be EmPOWERed” is an interactive guidebook and journal packed with inspirational prose, thought-provoking questions and written activities.

Once teased and bullied by classmates for being weird and different, Rasheda found a way to embrace and ultimately celebrate her uniqueness.

The book reveals her journey from excluded to emPOWERed and how she got there with help from trusted adults, mentors, friends and ultimately herself.

“Life isn’t always easy or fair. But if you’re equipped with the right tools, it makes the process more meaningful,” Rasheda says.  “You can learn a lot – especially from yourself.”

“Be EmPOWERed: How to Live Above & Beyond Life’s Drama” is now available on Amazon.com.

A book release and 6-year anniversary celebration is scheduled from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 19 at Good Cakes and Bakes in Detroit. Admission is $15 and includes a copy of the book, sweet treats, a special gift and raffle ticket for prizes. Tickets are available here.

Born and raised in Detroit, Rasheda Kamaria Williams is a communications professional and award-winning mentor on a mission to transform the way young people relate to one another. She is the founder and chief empowering officer for Empowered Flower Girl, a social enterprise that works with schools, communities and families seeking solutions to cyberbullying, drama, relational aggression and other social/communications challenges facing youth. A survivor of bullying, Rasheda was featured in Cosmopolitan magazine in the article “Being bullied changed my life.” 

Life After Bullying

Growing up, I was creative, social, mature and kind. Those were the adjectives I preferred to use to describe myself. But a group of kids in my class had a few other monikers in mind for me – weird, nerd, wannbe, Oreo and teacher’s pet.

I was teased, bullied and harassed almost daily from seventh to eighth grade.

In 2011 – five years ago this month – Cosmopolitan magazine published my story in the article “Being Bullied Changed My Life.” The article focused on women who were bullied as teens – before the digital age – and how the constant taunting impacted their lives both negatively and positively.

I shared my journey from excluded to empowered and the steps I took to overcome the drama.

After the story was published, I received emails and instant messages commending me for my courage. Empowered Flower Girl even gained 100+ Facebook fans/followers as a result.

I’m grateful for the opportunity to have shared my story publicly and encourage any who has overcome a challenge, obstacle or hardship to do the same. You never know whose life you might change or even save as a result.

PARENTING: Tips for stomping out bullying and digital harassment

We often receive emails, IMs and phone calls from parents and grandparents concerned about their child’s wellbeing in school. Often the child has reported being harassed or bullied. We commend parents for taking the first step toward a resolution.

There are numerous resources available to prevent and address conflict. One of my personal favorites is the Stomp Out Bullying organization.

Is your child being cyberbullied? Is she or he experiencing conflicts in school? Here’s how you can help.

Get more tips at StompOutBullying.org.

Be supportive of your child. Parents may be tempted to tell their kids to toughen up, that names never hurt anybody, yet – cyber attacks can harm a child easily and have a long lasting effect. Millions of cyber accomplices can help target or humiliate your child. That emotional pain is very serious and very real. Do not ignore it.

Alert the school and guidance counselor to watch out for in-school bullying and see how your child is handling things. It is important that you give your child love, support, nurturing and security. Children have committed suicide after having been cyberbullied. Take it seriously.

Did you know?
*Girls were about twice as likely as boys to be victims and perpetrators of cyberbullying.
*Of those students who had been cyberbullied relatively frequently (at least twice in the last couple of months):
*62% said that they had been cyberbullied by another student at school, and 46% had been cyberbullied by a friend.

Bullying Prevention, Relationship-Building Workshop Grants Available

In an effort to prevent bullying, cyberbullying, drama and relational aggression, Empowered Flower Girl is awarding a total of $500 in grants to organizations interested in hosting workshops. Schools, community/faith-based organization and other nonprofits based in Southeastern Michigan are eligible. 

Apply through Oct. 21 for a Fall 2015 grant.

From workshops combating teasing, cyberbullying and cliques, to programs encouraging goal-setting and self-esteem, Empowered Flower Girl helps schools and organizations address critical social issues.

For more information, visit www.empoweredflowergirl.com or email rkamaria@empoweredflowergirl.com.

Children At School“Ultimately, we believe that if students are equipped with the skills to peacefully and effectively problem solve as well as have the capacity for empathy, then they are less likely to be offenders of bullying, hazing or other disruptive behaviors.” – Rasheda Kamaria, Empowered Flower Girl Chief Empowering Officer

Empowered Flower Girl offers esteem, empathy building workshps for schools and communities

Girls fight

Are you an educator, parent or mentor who cares about the wellbeing and livelihood of young people in your community? Are you concerned that they may be missing out on an inspired life because of challenges at school, at home or among their peer groups?

Those questions arise for many adults who work with youth. That’s why in 2010, Empowered Flower Girl was launched.

I was a mentor and youth advocate who wanted to do something to make a difference for middle and high school students – who like me – were teased, bullied and ostracized by classmates and even relatives. But I knew that in order to help those students who were bullied and harassed, I had to find a way to also help those who were the aggressors or perpetrators.

The prevention and treatment of bullying in both perpetrators and victims is vitally important.

Cognitive-behavioral interventions have shown effectiveness across educational environments, disability types, ethnicity, and gender.

Empowered Flower Girl’s programs equip youth with problem-solving techniques and encourage transformation and acceptance.

Ultimately, we believe that if students are equipped with the skills to peacefully and effectively problem solve as well as have the capacity for empathy, then they are less likely to be offenders of bullying, hazing or other disruptive behaviors.

Empowered Flower Girl offers engaging and interactive workshops and programs that inspire and entertain youth, teachers, parents and the community.

From workshops combating teasing, cyberbullying and cliques, to programs encouraging goal-setting and self-esteem, Empowered Flower Girl helps schools and organizations address critical social issues.

Schedule your workshop today!

info@empoweredflowergirl.com

248-629-0EFG

A Year in Review: Empowered Flower Girl immersed in the community

For Empowered Flower Girl, 2013 has been an eventful and inspiring year. Over the past 11 months, EFG has had the honor of facilitating workshops and programs throughout southeastern Michigan and Lansing. Approximately 225 girls and women participated in our Chica Chat and Mentoring Girls & Inspiring Sisterhood workshops.

Thanks to Detroit SOUP, we were able to offer Chica Chats to a diverse group of girls and young women, including teenagers struggling with challenging behaviors and addictions. Over the summer, we partnered with Detroit Parent Network to host the first Community Chica Chat.

We also celebrated our three-year anniversary with friends, family and supporters, including Detroit City Council President Saunteel Jenkins.

I’d like to thank everyone who attended an event, recommended us to a friend, “liked” us on social media or sent positive energy. Your support helps us help girls and young women live POWERfully.

Empowered Flower Girl’s reach and impact in 2013:

Workshops

Hazel Park Middle School of Hazel Park, Mich.
Reach Academy of Roseville, Mich.
Serenity Program at Capstone Academy
Family Literacy Night, Detroit Parent Network
I Feel Good: Mind, Body & Soul Women’s Conference
I am Woman Expo
Parenting Awareness Michigan Conference
Women’s Weekend at Citadel of Praise

Media

Girl’s Life Magazine
Black America Web
Tenacity Radio
C and G News
ColorBlind Magazine
BLAC Magazine
Metro Parent Magazine
CBS Detroit

Cyberbullying prevention starts at home

Reported incidences cyberbullying are all too common in the Digital Age. Even kindergartners have access to a world of information in the palm of their hands thanks to smartphones and other mobile devices.

While schools and communities across the nation are implementing programs to curb in-school and online harassment, prevention ultimately starts at home.

With the increase in bullycides and bullying-related illnesses over the years, parents should be aware of and engaged in their children’s online activities.

Tweens and teens may consider it snooping, but Rasheda Kamaria, Empowered Flower Girl CEO, considers it conscious parenting.

“Informed parents are better able to help their children identify safe spaces online and avoid those that are potentially harmful,” she said.

Knowing which social networks and electronic communications tools are out there and which ones your children are actively engaging in is the first step. A study from Wayne State University’s College of Nursing, which surveyed nearly 400 metro Detroit youth ages 10 to 18, found that on average, youth spend two hours a day online and send 189 text messages. Additionally, some youth reported having up to 25 email accounts.

Jemica Carter, Ph.D., who co-authored the WSU study with associate professor Feleta Wilson, Ph.D., recommends parents get tech savvy.

“Some parents are unintentionally unaware of their children’s online patterns because they may not have access to the same technology or have challenges using it. Many community organizations and libraries offer free or low-cost computer and social media training for adults,” she said. “Education is the first line of prevention.”

The following are additional tips to help parents prevent and address cyberbullying:

Ask questions. Take an active role by inquiring about your child’s relationships with peers on and off line.  Most children won’t volunteer the information. Parents should ask specific, preferably open-ended questions to get their children to open up.

Host a tech-free family night. Ditch the cell phones, laptops and tablets for dinner and conversation. For some teens, talking face-to-face may seem old-fashioned but it’s a great way for families to connect. It also reduces the temptation to go online.

Be a role model. Parents are their children’s first teacher and play an important role in influencing appropriate online behavior. Parents should be conscious of what they’re posting on social networks and make an extra effort to use technology responsibly.

Overall, the entire community – parents, schools, community groups, faith-based organizations – play an important role in preventing and ending cyberbullying.

Girls learn art of self-expression during Community Chica Chat

When asked what’s the most important lesson learned during the Thursday, June 13th Community Chica Chat, one confident 13 year old said “don’t be afraid to express yourself.”

That was one of the goals of the two-hour workshop facilitated by Empowered Flower Girl CEO and Founder Rasheda Kamaria.

“Chica Chat is all about promoting sisterhood while empowering girls’ self expression, uniqueness and personal power,” said Kamaria, who founded the social enterprise in 2010. “The cyberbullying, drama and cliques are just the side effect of a bigger issue – the lack of communication skills and tools.”

Nearly 25 girls participated in the workshop held in partnership with Detroit Parent Network. Earlier this year, Kamaria received a $2,100 grant to support Empowered Flower Girl and its workshops/programs.

In addition to the Community Chica Chat, Empowered Flower Girl has hosted two workshops at Capstone Academy, a program for adjudicated adolescent girls ages 12-19.

On Aug. 17, Kamaria will facilitate a mini Chica Chat as part of the “I Feel Good: Mind, Body & Soul” women’s conference.

For more information about the event visit www.superwomanproductions.com.

Learn more about Empowered Flower Girl’s workshops and programs at www.empoweredflowergirl.com.

Images courtesy of Bontisha Rose Photography

 

 

Empowered Flower Girl hosts Chica Chat in partnership with Detroit Parent Network

Normal
0

false
false
false

EN-US
X-NONE
X-NONE

MicrosoftInternetExplorer4

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-qformat:yes;
mso-style-parent:””;
mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin-top:0in;
mso-para-margin-right:0in;
mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt;
mso-para-margin-left:0in;
line-height:115%;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:11.0pt;
font-family:”Calibri”,”sans-serif”;
mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”;
mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast;
mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;
mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;}

Workshop to address cyberbullying, drama and cliques among middle, high school girls

 

DETROIT – In an effort to combat cyberbullying, drama and “mean girl” behavior and inspire positive relationships among middle and high school students, Empowered Flower Girl will host its signature Chica Chat workshop – in partnership with Detroit Parent Network.

 

The two-hour workshop, scheduled from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 13, 2013, is open to girls 10-16 years old throughout the metro Detroit area.

 

“Our goal is to empower girls and young women with the tools to communicate effectively,” said Rasheda Kamaria, chief empowering officer and founder of Empowered Flower Girl. “The workshop provides them with a safe, judgment-free and supportive environment where they can express themselves fully while getting to know other girls.”

 

Earlier this year, Empowered Flower Girl received a grant from Detroit SOUP, a micro-funding organization, to offer the workshop to three Detroit schools and a nonprofit organization free of charge.

“We’re excited to offer Chica Chat in Detroit,” Kamaria said. “I grew up in the city. I was bullied and picked on throughout middle school and can relate to what young people are experiencing. Prevention is our priority.”

 

In order to participate, youth must have their parent’s or guardian’s permission.

 

Register through June 6 at chicachat.eventbrite.com. For more information about Empowered Flower Girl, visit empoweredflowergirl.com.

 

Rasheda Kamaria is the chief empowering officer and founder of Empowered Flower Girl LLC, a social enterprise that produces workshops and clothing that inspire girls and young women to live powerfully. A survivor of bullying, Kamaria was featured in the article “Being Bullied Changed My Life” in the May 2011 issue of Cosmopolitan magazine and has written numerous articles on the subject.

 

Chica Chat combats girl bullying

Chica Chat at a Glance

When: Thursday, June 13, 2013; 5 to 7 p.m.

Where: Detroit Parent Network, 726 Lothrop Rd., Detroit

Contact: Rasheda Kamaria, info@empoweredflowergirl.com

Cost: Free; advance registration is required