I had the honor of spending a day with these great girls at the G.R.E.A.T. Retreat! (Girls Retreat Empowering All Together).
“At the GREAT Retreat, we give high-risk teenage girls the opportunity to depart
the city to a serene natural setting, where they are able to relax, be at ease
in a safe environment, and create friendships with one another. Our goal is to educate
on self-esteem, coping, boundaries, healthy relationships, and positive body
image. During the retreat, the girls take part in cultural and educational
activities to strengthen their spirit, and help them discover their true inner
The first retreat was in 2011, and due to funding complexities, retreat organizer Crystal Small feared that the “annual” retreat would be forced to end after just one season.
That’s where I come in….
12 fantastic models and I worked together to create the 2013 RPM calendar. From the beginning, it was my vision to donate the calendar proceeds to a charity or cause that benefits women or girls. A year of searching turned up several worthy and deserving causes, but sadly none of them felt right to me. This July – seemingly by accident – I learned about this small retreat that was having such a positive impact on teenage girls. After learning more about it, I could hardly contain tears of excitement. Finally, a cause that spoke to my heart! THIS would be the recipient of the calendar proceeds.
I got in touch with Crystal to find out more, and to present my offer. She was excited (and I think a bit surprised) to discover a private donor for their camp. The first time that we spoke, Crystal had concerns of budget and timing, and was on the fence about being able to pull off a 2nd retreat. By the time we got off the phone, I promised Crystal the funding, and Crystal promised me that they would put on the retreat in 2012 and 2013. Win-Win! How exciting for the girls in 2011 who gave an overwhelming review of the retreat they attended, and for the girls in 2012 and beyond who get to attend the same retreat thanks to all of us!
So, Crystal invited me out to the 2012 retreat to meet the girls, and allow me to photograph them. Let me introduce you….
Delores, Cathy and Crystal
How do you NOT fall in love with this crew! Aren’t they amazing! Let’s all work together, and help send more teenage girls to the G.R.E.A.T. Retreat. Any support for this dynamic retreat is greatly appreciated by all of us! 2013 RPM Calendars are available to purchase for $20. Every dollar beyond expenses is being donated directly to benefit future G.R.E.A.T. Retreats. The money will be used to pay for lodging, travel, food, crafts, educational materials, and gifts for the girls.
Thank you to everyone who chooses to support this wonderful cause. Thank you to the girls who attend the retreat. And thank you SO MUCH to the organizers who care about the well-being of these teenage girls.
“Big dreams start small”