It’s an unfortunate fact: Every single day, girls in Canada are exposed to thousands of media messages telling them how to look, think, and feel.
The impact of this on girls’ well-being is serious: We know that through constant exposure to sexualized imagery, women and girls learn that their primary value comes from their physical appearance.
We also know that when girls are socialized to obsessively focus on their appearance, they pay a steep price.
All this made us wonder: What would happen if girls were in the position to create the messages they see?
Last Fall, the Canadian Women’s Foundation and Havas Canada partnered to create #GirlPowered, a campaign that empowers girls to challenge media messages by submitting their own positive messages to the #GirlPowered gallery. With more than 1,500 submissions, our national #GirlPowered Girls’ Council had their work cut out for them to select a series of messages that are appearing in a national advertising campaign (look out for #GirlPowered ads this February!)
Although the platform was originally intended for girls to create messages for other girls, we received an overwhelming response from women wanting to share their messages for girls. We also asked attendees at the National Women’s Show in Toronto to share their messages for girls. Here are a few of our favourites:
"Your dreams are not too big." – Suzanne, Age 42
"You are powerful – you just haven't been told that yet." – Kelly, Age 24
"You do you! There is nobody better ❤️." – Kendall, Age 41
"It might be scary, but you're stronger than it is." – Nib, Age 28
"Embrace your quirks and celebrate what makes you unique." – Katie, Age 28
“Don't be afraid to say ‘No.’” – Eveline, National Women’s Show attendee
"Make it your life's work to discover your identity and celebrate it." – Amanda, National Women’s Show attendee
“You are worth more than what mainstream media allows you to believe.” – Stephanie, National Women’s Show attendee
“Never let anyone say you can't do something you feel is right for you.” – Cher, National Women’s Show attendee
“Don't wish for it, work for it!” – Nancy, National Women’s Show attendee
Click here to learn more about how the Canadian Women’s Foundation empowers girls.
- This message is brought to you by #GirlPowered!
- Say No to Pretty Doormats
- Want to See More Girls in STEM? Do Away with Gender Stereotypes
- Have you seen the #GirlPowered messages on www.girlpowered.ca? Share your favourites online and with the girls in your life!
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