Royal Palm Beach High School’s “My Fair Ladies” do a little bit of everything.
The group that began two years ago as a woman’s empowerment club has expanded it’s efforts, collaborating with others to give back and make the school a better place.
Though its main focus is still molding young women into ladies, the more than 40 regular club members have run with other projects =such as its ongoing backpack drive.
The charity is designed to stuff backpacks full of school supplies and hygiene products and give them to less fortunate classmates at the high school and its middle school feeders.
“It feels really good knowing that you’re helping someone,” said 10th grader Kristina Michel. “We don’t know who the kids are, but we know we’re helping our school.”
The passion of the girls and their willingness to help others makes the job of the group’s teacher supervisors that much easier.
English teacher Brandi Marolla jokes that her job is just to fill out paperwork. The girls keep coming to her with ideas and she helps to make them happen.
Marolla, who has a young daughter of her own, hopes that she grows up to be like the girls in “My Fair Ladies.”
The club began at the beginning of the previous school year as the brainchild of former students Nikita Grant and Nia Greene.
Grant, now a freshman at Florida International University, said when she got to high school she noticed that the girls were “at each other’s throats.” She remembers thinking during her sophomore year that it would be nice to have some sort of club or program to bring girls together.
She was on the debate team, but at that point Grant hadn’t carved out a niche outside of her classes.
The idea for the club remained a concept until her senior year when she decided to make it happen. “My Fair Ladies” was an instant success from the first meeting when more than 50 girls showed up.
“It was one of the more inspiring years I had in my high school career,” said Grant, who still keeps in touch with the them after graduation.
Earlier this year, new president Jaslyn Dominique and the rest of the group hosted a conference for freshman girls, covering the gamut of high-school issues from classes to relationships to body image to mental health. The two-day, November conference, which was organized by about 20 members of the club, drew about 160 girls.
The team is hoping to put together an even bigger conference in the spring.
They’re also already happy with the results of the backpack drive, but the girls hope to make it even bigger. Anyone wishing to donate school supplies or snacks or personal care items can contact the school, and let them know it’s for the backpack drive.
And “My Fair Ladies” is still growing.
Co-sponsor and social studies teacher Caitlin Gallagher often has girls approach her after class asking how to get involved.
It even gets a little emotional for Marolla when she sees all the good things the girls are doing.
“The future is bright if we have girls like this who are in charge and leading the way,” she said. “They’re not just good students, they’re good people.”
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