Wi Not Me was established to equip adolescent girls of color from Richmond, VA and surrounding counties with life skills and opportunities to overcome barriers. The program was launched in 2019 by Matoaka Berry who is passionate about empowering and preparing todays girls with the tools needed to advance in the world.
The program will allow young girls from rising 5th graders (age 10) to 2nd year of college (age 20) the ability to gain skills and build beneficial relationships. Once in college they will have the opportunity to come back and volunteer as mentors to other girls continuing the circle of growth.
The program will have classes and seminars held on an alternating Saturday schedule from 9:00am - 12:00pm allowing breaks for holidays and summers. During the Saturday sessions the girls will learn various skills from these main categories: health, finance, technology, education and community service. The Saturday sessions will be taught by business professionals with various backgrounds in the main categories.
Throughout the program some Saturdays's will include educational trips to business establishments, colleges, museums, financials institutions and etc. They will get involved in the community and learn to give back through volunteering to feed the homeless during the holidays and volunteering act the annual "Back to School" event. There will also be opportunities to raise money through fundraisers like fashion shows, father - daughter dances, grandparents brunches and mother - daughter tea.
Once in college the girls will have monthly virtual meetings with an objective that meets their needs at a college level. During the summers the college students will be able to volunteer as mentors to the other girls and eventually being paired with high school seniors to allow for easier transitions to college.
Wi Not Me will provide a place where every girl is welcomed, heard and encouraged giving them the ability to improve their lives; eliminating the socioeconomic and psychosocial stressors.