PEARLS WITH POWER, PASSION AND PURPOSE was an event designed to help build confidence, leadership and self-worth in area teenage girls. The June 17 event was presented by the African American Leadership Association and Ladies of NIA. (Photos by Rob Taylor Jr.)

New Pittsburgh Courier Managing Editor Rob Taylor Jr. was on the campus of CCAC early Saturday, June 17 and located an outstanding program meant to uplift Pittsburgh’s Black female youth. “Pearls, with Power, Passion and Purpose” brought together a number of youth to discuss everything from confidence-building, creating building blocks for success, building your personal brand, and building self-esteem. The event was presented by the African American Leadership Association and Ladies of NIA.

“The reason for this event is because I have my own 19-year-old daughter and I see the different struggles that her and her friends go through on a daily basis,” said Kenya Matthews, lead organizer of the event. Matthews’ efforts to improve the lives of teenage girls were joined by the likes of Yarra M. Howze, principal of Pittsburgh Allegheny 6-8, De’netta Benjamin, director of quality improvement for Familylinks, Felicia Mycyk, owner of Business Liaison, Nicole Webster, workplace solutions lead for Accenture Pittsburgh, and Hotep The Artist (Candace Walker).

Matthews said some of the issues girls deal with include “struggling with depression, finding leadership, having confidence in themselves and just knowing how to press forward and overcome triumph so they can be who they want to be and be comfortable in their own skin.”

Matthews gave the following advice to those girls who look to gain more self-esteem: “Get to know yourself, because once you understand what you’re passionate about and you understand what your purpose is, and you combine those together, you’re going to be unstoppable. Once you know who you are, nobody can take that away from you.”

 

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