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SHINE program aims to empower young ladies in Shepherd

A brand new program in Shepherd aims to spread a message of empowerment to middle school students, urging them to ‘SHINE.’
“That middle school age is such a crucial age there’s so many things coming at these kids from every which way,” said Shepherd Police Chief Luke Sawyer.
On Wednesday Chief Sawyer presented a new program called ‘shine’ to the Shepherd Middle School girls.
He says girls of that age are bombarded with negative images in the media.
“Whether it’s social media whether it’s TV, reality TV, trying to describe them how they should look how much they should weigh, whether they should have a boyfriend or not, we’re trying to cut through all that garbage and saying you are a powerful young lady, let’s hear that voice,” explained Chief Sawyer.
Four influential women from Mid-Michigan spoke to the students.
They included a lawyer, a radio host, an inspirational speaker, and a child abuse advocate.
Each speaker represented a word: individuality, dream, voice, and worthy.
The goal is to empower these middle school girls to become the woman they want to be and not what someone says they should be.
“I thought that it was really cool they brought in women we can look up to in our community. We can just see them and say wow they’re a great role model and they know that they’re valuable, I know that we’re valuable,” said Anna Lator, a 7th Grader at Shepherd Middle School.
Anna Lator was one of the young ladies at the presentation.
She says she took the message to heart, and hopes the school continues the program in future years.
“Everybody’s valuable all girls are like diamonds and they’re really special in their own way and no matter what others tell you you’re important and you’re valuable,” explained Lator.
“Girls should just be themselves and not really let others bring them down and just shine the best you can,” said Ellie Sickles, who is also a 7th Grader at Shepherd Middle School.


Culled from NBC25NEWS

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