Virginia M. Akar is the founding CEO of Girls Inc. of Greater Miami, formerly known as Strong Girls, Inc. As an advocate for education equality, she works to ensure that girls in underserved communities have access to support, resources and information that will lead to positive academic, health and behavioral outcomes. Virginia’s early career as a Miami-Dade County prosecutor working in the juvenile division set the foundation for her advocacy work for young girls. She saw beyond the child in front of the judge and saw instead a complex system that rarely addressed the problem from its root causes. In 2015, research led her to Social and Emotional Learning as a solution to help young girls, particularly those who’ve experienced childhood trauma, break out of the vicious cycle they were born into. In 2020 Virginia was awarded the United Way Essie Silva Community Builder Award. Virginia, her husband and their three children are proud to call Miami home.
IN THIS EPISODE OF THE KNOW WITH NIKKI SPO, Nikki and Virginia discuss many topics related to the empowerment of young women and girls. Virginia shares her story of leaving a successful career as a prosecutor to raise her children, and how her earlier career and what she had seen led her to create the nonprofit Strong Girls, Inc. Nikki and Virginia touch on the importance of mentorship, the importance of having “the right mentor” and the beauty and strength created when one woman connects with another. Virginia provides a comprehensive outline of the amazing work Girls Inc. of Greater Miami is doing including the “whole girl experience”. In her fun and thoughtful way, Nikki floats the topic of how women relate to their bodies, how men relate to women’s personal relationships with their own bodies and how we all must work together to create societal change around this somewhat taboo topic.
Lastly, the women touch on the concept of “leaning in”, asking for help and accepting that help.
More topics covered:
the power of self-esteem building for children
the concept of "not yet"
the whole girl experience
leaning in and the strength of asking for help
Connect with Virginia: Web: www.girlsincmiami.org IG: @girlsincmiami
Connect with Nikki: Web: www.nikkispo.com IG: @nikkisappspo / @theknowwithnikkispo
For information on sponsorship/collaborations, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.