This is programming created by the RelationShift Project and facilitated by Justine Finn. The Young Women’s Empowerment Program supports high-school aged young women in developing the knowledge, skills and capacities to develop strong and healthy identities; to engage in healthy interpersonal relationships; to and to be champions of their own and others’ equality, respect and safety as leaders in their communities. Topics include: healthy personal and romantic relationships; body image; representation of women in the media; racism and gender inequality; identity development; love and affection and living one’s best life online and on social media, to name a few. The ten-month Program is offered over a series of ten 90-minute sessions, led by trained facilitators and experts on youth development. The Program is designed to create a cohort of participants that support each other’s learning and development. The Program uses best practices in interactive learning methods to provide an engaging, inviting and safe environment for participants and uses current research and data, as well as multi-media and real-life experiences to help participants apply their learning to their lives. Participants will receive a certificate of completion from Relation-Shift for participating in at least 8 of the 10 sessions. Optional Capstone Project: Using their learning from the program, participants will design their own project or presentation to help empower other young people in their community, school or life. (Examples: Facilitate workshops for middle school students; host a documentary viewing and discussion on a relevant topic; interview other young women about a related issue and write a paper, article or art piece based on the results; create or design a piece of art of self-expression reflecting themes addressed in the Program, etc.)
Instructor: Justine Finn
Justine founded Relation-Shift at the Harvard Innovation Lab in order to end sexual violence, promote healthier relationships and create safer schools. Justine has worked for the past twelve years to advance the equality of women and men, facilitating classes, workshops and seminars across the country on gender, media representation and the prevention of sexual and relationship violence and bullying. Justine worked in social services and development at the Tahirih Justice Center for five years, a national nonprofit organization that protects immigrant women and girls refusing to become victims of violence, and served as the Washington DC Respect Challenge campaign manager for Futures Without Violence. Previously, Justine worked as a teacher at a women’s college in Nanjing, China and as a communications specialist and reporter in Chicago. Justine obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Journalism at Loyola University of Chicago and her Ed.M, with a focus on human development and psychology, at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.