Shelby Kretz, 1girl (Spring Impact Grant 2015)

Ohio State University graduate Shelby Kretz is improving gender equality and educational opportunities for young girls. She originally received a Pollination Project seed grant to support 1girl, a non-profit organization she started in college that turns underprivileged middle school girls into successful leaders, through hands on projects and professional development.

Through their “Educating Future Leaders” program, 1girl targets skills students don’t learn in school such as creative problem solving, goal setting, public speaking, critical thinking, and conflict resolution. Since we funded the program originally, back in 2013, 1Girl has grown to eight program sites in Michigan and Ohio, four college chapters led by college women who volunteer to teach and mentor the girls, and is now expanding to the Los Angeles, CA area.

Shelby is now packing up and moving her life to Southern CA where she will spearhead the launch of a local college chapter and plans to create at least 3 chapters throughout Southern California. Shelby and the college volunteers will collaborate and partner with schools, after school programs and local community organizations in low income areas, focusing on working with girls with the highest needs. Shelby’s $3,000 impact grant will allow 1Girl to launch programming in the Southern, CA region.

To learn more about 1girl, check out their website, and Facebook, and follow them on Twitter and Instagram.