Source: Girls Inc.
Girls Inc. of Carpinteria member Laura Flores, 17, has been selected as one of 11 girls from Girls Inc. affiliates across the U.S. to serve on the 2020-2021 Girls Inc. National Teen Advocacy Council (TAC). Flores will be the second member from the Carpinteria affiliate to serve in this national leadership capacity.
The TAC is a leadership body made up of Girls Inc. high school students (ages 14-18) who advise and inform Girls Inc. National’s advocacy work, by learning about and sharing issues facing girls in their respective communities. TAC members support Girls Inc. advocacy efforts through writing blog posts, sharing messages on social media, and speaking publicly on behalf of the Girls Inc. network.
“Girls Inc.’s programming, environment, and staff have helped me challenge stereotypes, find my voice, and gain the confidence I needed to thrive,” said Laura Flores. “I am humbled to build upon my experience through the Teen Advocacy Council, and join this safe space for young women all over the nation to collaborate and discuss important concerns. This opportunity provides a platform to learn and grow from one another while representing my community and advocating for the issues we face.”
Flores joined Girls Inc. as a sixth grader, participating in the Teen Center and Eureka! Program. She credits Girls Inc. of Carpinteria for fostering her passion for social justice and advocacy through leadership and community action programming, including a trip to meet lawmakers in Washington DC through Eureka. She was inspired to take on leadership roles and served as junior class vice president at Carpinteria High School.
“Laura is an outstanding leader in our community and has worked incredibly hard to get here,” said Kenya Rodriguez, Girls Inc. of Carpinteria Outreach & Eureka Program Manager. “We are proud to see her taking this work to the national level through the Teen Advocacy Council and know she will continue to use her voice to create positive social change for young women and girls in our community and beyond.”
Following the death of George Floyd, Flores made a commitment to fighting racial injustice and systemic racism. She attended more than half a dozen Carpinteria Unified School District (CUSD) Board meetings and emailed local representatives this past summer to voice her concerns. Flores organized a local protest in support of Black Lives Matter and rallied support for the passing of a new multicultural literature class that is now being offered as an elective at her school.
A first-generation Latina student, Flores is also a leader in the Celebrating Adversity, Diversity, and Education (CADE) club and leads Carpinteria’s Diversify Our Narrative chapter, advancing diversity and inclusion at schools in the CUSD schools.
Earlier this year, Flores was named a Girls Inc. National Scholar, a prestigious award that recognizing young women for their commitment to achieving academically and serving their communities.
Flores plans to attend UCLA and pursue a career in teaching or politics.
For more information about Girls Inc. of Carpinteria, call 805-684-6364 or visit www.girlsinc-carp.org.