Designing a Community Action Project to Get More Girls Moving
During the “Create A MOVEment” phase of GEM, Ambassadors work together to design a physical activity program that specifically addresses the needs of their community and helps other girls overcome barriers to getting active. GEM Ambassadors are provided with guidance and support as they identify the needs of their community, draft a program plan, implement their project and evaluate the metrics. To succeed, they must connect and engage with fellow middle school girls and develop a sustainable approach to expand the program within their community.
The Create A MOVEment GEM Project allows GEM groups to work together and spearhead change in their communities by creating programs that promote improved health and wellness for more girls across Georgia. As they work to complete their GEM Project, girls learn valuable real-world skills in leadership, communication, networking, project planning, goal setting, and evaluating. To begin, girls individually assess their unique strengths and weaknesses and use the learnings to identify how each group member can best collaborate within the group.
Create A MOVEment:
A GEM Project
GEM Ambassadors are change agents, working together to create and implement a plan to expand and support girl-designed physical activity opportunities to improve the health and wellness of other girls in their schools, clubs and communities. Their excitement about GEM helps to improve perceptions, attitudes and motivation toward physical activity among their peers.
Removing Barriers That Prevent Girls From Being Active
Part of the challenge that GEM Ambassadors face when designing their GEM Project is helping their peers overcome obstacles that typically prevent middle school girls from being active. As they review the middle school research done in the planning phases of the GEM Program, they learn what barriers middle school girls face and use their expertise to come up with additional relevant insights into the problem. Girls are encouraged to provide their ideas for creative and sustainable solutions that make a permanent change which is structural, inspirational or legislative in nature.
Learn more about why we work to empower middle school girls.
Designing a Program That Promotes Health and Fitness
A successful GEM Project is relevant and realistic. GEM Ambassadors are encouraged to consider criteria like:
- Can we actually do it?
- Will it benefit girls?
- Will it help girls to be more active?
- Can we afford to do it?
- Is it sustainable?
An example of a sustainable solution that is legislative in nature would be creating a formal campaign for more sidewalks or bike trails in your community and presenting your ideas and research to local government officials.
SMART Goal Approach
As GEM groups decide on their final project idea, they use the SMART Goal approach to determine if the goal is specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound. Girls utilize the criteria outlined in their GEM Journal throughout the process to access and evaluate each aspect of their project goals.
From here, girls move on to the planning and implementation phases of their Project. They outline tasks needed to complete the project, assign roles and responsibilities, determine the timelines, and identify needs and areas of support. In the implementation stage, girls continue to monitor and adjust while fine tuning communication and collecting data. As the last step of their GEM Project, girls will reflect and evaluate their success.
At GEM, we empower middle school girls to create sustainable habits for a healthier future. Unlike other programs, we put girls at the center of designing and implementing physical activity and wellness programs that meet their needs.
Through strong partnerships and unique programming, GEM is empowering girls to create physical activity programs, improve fitness levels, promote long term health, and enhance their emotional well-being. Your support today will help us continue to deliver innovative youth-led programming to girls across Georgia and helping us to get more girls moving.